You know helmet-to-helmet hits are illegal, but what about shoulder pad to chest hits? That appears to be penalty worth too, at least based on a play that occurred in a recent Bengals vs. Cowboys game where safety Reggie Nelson separated receiver Dez Bryant from the ball.
Nelson led with his shoulder pads and nailed Bryant in the chest just as he caught the ball, knocking it loose. The play drew a personal foul call from a referee, even though there is no formal rule that prohibits such a hit.
Bengals coach Marvin Lewis was livid and defended Nelson when he said:
"I thought it was a great target and probably one that will be on their teaching reel of how to do it. Reggie’s done a good job with those things. He was on their teaching reel last year, and I thought that one was picture perfect.”
If defensive backs can't legitimately tackle a receiver without being penalized, then this would open up the passing game even more. Would we see high-scoring shootouts akin to college football? Do we want football-game scores that resemble basketball-game scores?