New safety rules: Peel-back block now applies to all offensive players

By Bill Bradley, contributing editor

Editor's note: This is the third of five capsules explaining the NFL's new player-safety rules that were passed at last week's Annual Meeting.

WEDNESDAY: The peel-back block.

Who:All offensive players.

What:Blockers cannot initiate contact on the side and below the waist against an opponent if the blocker is moving toward his own end line; and he approaches the opponent from behind or from the side

When:On all offensive plays and plays in which the defensive team has gained possession.

Where:All parts of the field. If the near shoulder of the blocker contacts the front of his opponent's body, the peel-back block is legal.

How will be it be enforced:A 15-yard penalty for unnecessary roughness?

Reaction: "Previously, peel back blocks were only illegal for players who lined up in the tackle box. Now, for player safety reasons, they are illegal for all offensive players." –

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