?Sorry for the mixup.—ED.
Thanks a lot; that's all I needed! I have three brothers living in Tempe, two of whom attended Arizona State (Yuck!). I attended the University of Arizona in Tucson, and I am an avid Wildcat fan. Every time the Sun Devils (Gosh, did I actually write that?) win, I receive a collect call from my Sun Devil siblings, along with all the pertinent information concerning that particular victory. Thanks to you, my mailbox will now be stuffed with articles and articles and more articles. Can you feel the rivalry?
NFL INJURIES (CONT.)
Paul Zimmerman's article on NFL injuries (The Agony Must End, Nov. 10) failed to make an observation that is often overlooked: League rule changes have increased the risk of injury to players at the offensive skill positions.
In an effort to increase passing efficiency, the NFL adopted the five-yard "chuck rule" allowing defensive players to "bump" receivers only within five yards of the line of scrimmage. The natural consequence of this rule is that receivers are now exposed to higher-speed collisions in high-risk areas, namely, the intermediate passing zones. Allowing defenders to "bump" offensive players anywhere upfield will slow them down and expose them to fewer violent hits because it will become more difficult for the receiver to work his way into these high-risk areas.
In addition, because secondaries have their hands tied, defensive coaches must compensate by applying more pressure on the quarterbacks. More blitzing results in more quarterback injuries. If defensive backs are allowed to do what they do best—i.e., cover receivers—coaches will respond by taking fewer risks (i.e., blitzing) and rely on their players' cover skills.
Of course, allowing the traditional style of bump-and-run coverage on the field will probably mean fewer pass completions, and this translates into fewer points. I am not certain if the NFL is willing to sacrifice entertainment for safety.
Defensive Backfield Coach
Helix High School
La Mesa, Calif.
MOST VALUABLE STATE?
What do the Chicago Bears' Richard Dent, the University of Louisville's Pervis Ellison and the New York Mets' Ray Knight have in common? All won major MVP awards in 1986, and all are from Georgia. Dent, from Atlanta, was the MVP in the Super Bowl. Ellison, from Savannah, was the MVP in the NCAA Final Four. And Knight, from Albany, was the MVP in the World Series. Considering the number of players involved, I think it's amazing that all three are from Georgia.