The NFL's overtime rules and format will be hot topic of discussion at the league's spring meeting in Key Biscayne, Fla., this week. It comes on the heels of a postseason in which both the NFC and AFC championship games went into overtime, and the road team won both games.
The NFL's postseason overtime format has been questioned for more than 60 years, ever since a controversial, last-second field goal set up overtime in the 1965 Western Conference championship between Green Bay and Baltimore. The big question still today: Should both teams get the ball?
Since that game back in '65, a total of 30 NFL playoff games have gone into overtime. In those games, 19 times (63.3 percent) did both teams get an offensive possession.
But it's the 11 games in which one team did not have a possession that are shaping a potential change in the NFL's overtime rules. We look back at those games below.
— LA Rams 19, NY Giants 13
When: 1989-90 NFC divisional playoffs
What happened: The Rams were on the road at Giants Stadium, and Jim Everett led a TD drive in overtime capped with a 30-yard TD pass to Flipper Anderson on first-and-15. The drive was aided by a pass interference call on Sheldon White earlier in the drive.
Controversy: The Giants were 12-4 in the regular season, had Bill Parcells and Bill Belichick on their coaching staff and featured a defense led by Lawrence Taylor. Everett and Anderson made the play in OT. It would be more than a decade before the next overtime postseason game.
— New England 16, Oakland 13
When: 2001-02 AFC divisional playoffs
What happened: The Patriots took advantage of the “Tuck Rule” in regulation, and Tom Brady marched New England to field goal range after winning the overtime coin toss. Adam Vinatieri launched the Patriots' dynasty with a 23-yard field goal.
Controversy: There has been so much focus on “The Tuck Rule” over the years that it is easy to forget the Raiders did not get a chance to answer in overtime.
— Tennessee 34, Pittsburgh 31
When: 2002-03 AFC divisional playoffs
What happened: The Titans had a chance to win in regulation, but they made good in overtime after winning the coin toss. Steve McNair drove Tennessee into the red zone, setting up Joe Nedney for a shot at redemption.
Controversy: Nedney made the first try, but the Steelers called timeout. He missed the second, but Dewayne Washington was called for running into the kicker. Nedney made good once and for all on the third attempt. Pittsburgh never got the ball in overtime.
— San Diego 23, Indianapolis 17
When: 2008-09 AFC wild-card playoffs
What happened: The Chargers got the ball first in overtime and drove down the field for the game-winning TD with the help of a defensive holding on Tim Jennings and a facemask penalty by Clint Session. Darren Sproles ended the game with a 22-yard TD.
Controversy: The Colts were on the road, and Peyton Manning didn't get the ball in OT. That trend would be amplified the following season and lead to rule changes.
— Arizona 51, Green Bay 45
When: 2009-10 NFC wild-card playoffs
What happened: This one counts as a technicality, because the Packers had the ball first in Aaron Rodgers' first playoff game, and the Cardinals won despite not getting a possession. Rodgers was sacked on a third-and-5, and Karlos Dansby returned the QB's fumble for a game-winning TD.
Controversy: Some thought a facemask penalty was committed on the sack. Regardless, the play would help lead to new overtime rules installed after the playoffs.
— New Orleans 31, Minnesota 28
When: 2009-10 NFC championship game
What happened: The Saints got the ball first in overtime, and Drew Brees led a drive that set up the game-winning field goal by Garrett Hartley. This was the first conference championship game in which both teams did not have a possession in overtime.
Controversy: Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre did not get an overtime drive with the Vikings in what would be his final postseason game. The NFL changed postseason rules afterward. The receiving team could win the game with a touchdown, but a field goal would allow the kicking team to still get a possession in overtime.
— Denver 29, Pittsburgh 23
When: 2011-12 AFC wild-card playoffs
What happened: This was the first postseason overtime game under the new format, and it took Denver quarterback Tim Tebow one pass to end the game. He hit Demaryius Thomas for an 80-yard TD. The Steelers did not get a chance to respond.
Controversy: It's one of the most iconic finishes in playoff history. Tebow finished with 316 passing yards in his only postseason win.
— Green Bay 28, Seattle 22
When: 2014-15 NFC championship game
What happened: The Seahawks scored 15 unanswered points in the fourth quarter with the help of a fumbled onside kick by Brandon Bostick, which set up overtime. Russell Wilson led an 87-yard drive in overtime, capped with a 35-yard TD pass to Jermaine Kearse.
Controversy: Packers fans lament the fact that Rodgers did not get a chance to answer, but the Green Bay collapse on the road was the bigger reason for this loss.
— Arizona 26, Green Bay 20
When: 2015-16 NFC divisional playoffs
What happened: Rodgers tied the divisional playoff game with a Hail Mary to Jeff Janis at the end of regulation, but Carson Palmer needed just three plays to respond in overtime. He hit Larry Fitzgerald for a 75-yard pass, and two plays later, Fitzgerald scored on a 5-yard shovel pass.
Controversy: It was the second postseason in which Rodgers, a two-time NFL MVP, did not get a chance to respond in overtime.
— New England 34, Atlanta 28
When: Super Bowl 51
What happened: Brady led a 10-play, 93-yard drive to complete a miraculous, fourth-quarter comeback against the Falcons and push the first Super Bowl to overtime. Brady then led an eight-play, 75-yard drive, capped by a 2-yard TD run by James White. NFL MVP Matt Ryan didn't get the chance to respond in overtime.
Controversy: Atlanta blew a 28-3 lead and had no answer for Brady in the fourth quarter, but Patriots fatigue would exacerbate the current debate two years later.
— New England 37, Kansas City 31
When: 2018-19 AFC championship game
What happened: NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes led a game-tying, field-goal drive at the end of regulation, but Brady silenced Arrowhead Stadium in overtime with a 13-play, 75-yard drive capped with a two-yard TD run by Rex Burkhead.
Controversy: After not getting a chance to possess the ball against the Patriots, the Chiefs submitted a rule-change proposal that would allow both teams a chance to get the ball.
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