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Buccaneers HC Greg Schiano wants to eliminate kickoffs

The Bucs head coach thinks the risk presented by the way kickoffs are played simply isn't worth it.

Dustin Bradford

Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Greg Schiano thinks the game would be better off without kickoffs, the Tampa Bay Times reports, but it isn't about a competitive advantage. Spurred by the 2010 spinal cord injury to Eric LeGrand, Schiano simply thinks that the high-speed collisions involved in kickoffs are too dangerous.

The Times points to a September article where Schiano discusses the idea of the NFL without kickoffs. "I believe that day will come," the coach said. In its place, Schiano has a unique idea: The scoring team would retain control of the ball, receiving it at their own 30-yard line, with it being 4th down at 15 yards to go. They could then either punt it away or attempt to convert.

If Schiano's goal is to take kickoff collisions out of the game, Tampa Bay is certainly doing their part. They lead the league with a touchback on 72.2 percent of all kickoffs, and kicker Michael Koenen is tied for the league lead in touchbacks with 52. Only 18 of Koenen's kicks have been returned, with opponents averaging 25 yards per return.

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