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32 New Extra-Point Strategies for 32 Teams

Mike Tanier@@miketanierNFL National Lead WriterMay 20, 2015

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The NFL's new extra-point rules have fans buzzing. Will some coaches be more aggressive about two-point conversions now that the extra-point kick is less of a chip shot? Will weather play more of a role in extra-point strategy? Will this affect my usual post-touchdown routine of running to the bathroom or ordering more nachos?

Each team will adapt to the next extra-point rules in its own way. According to my exclusive investigation of all 32 extra-point philosophies, some teams are more prepared to adapt than others. Here's what to expect this season for each team, based on the new strategies:

AFC East

Buffalo Bills

Thought bubble appears above Rex Ryan's head: Two-pointer? I hardly even know her! Nyuk-nyuk-nyuk. But seriously: Let's just kick the extra point. Our quarterbacks stink.      

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Miami Dolphins

Steven Senne/Associated Press

Joe Philbin sends the Dolphins to line up at the 15-yard line for an extra point. Then he calls a fake, with Brandon Fields ordered to throw to Caleb Sturgis for a needlessly difficult and complicated two-point conversion. Then he calls a timeout to see how the defense reacts to the fake, changes his mind and orders an extra-point kick. It's the final minute of the fourth quarter, by the way, and the Dolphins trail by two.

New England Patriots

Oh, wait until you see the special "two-point conversion ball" the Patriots are hiding in the basin of a bathroom stall like Michael Corleone's gun. It's filled to 12.49 PSI with argon, and it was broken in by rubbing it against a unicorn horn.

New York Jets

Geno Smith will lead the league in two-pointers. Because, you know, a safety is a two-pointer.

AFC North

Baltimore Ravens

Gene J. Puskar/Associated Press

The Ravens line up at the 15 on the road against the Raiders. Five false starts later, Justin Tucker kicks a 57-yard extra point to give the Ravens a 13-12 win.

Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals lose in the first round of the playoffs when Andy Dalton manages to underthrow a two-yard pass.

Cleveland Browns

Mike Pettine tells his team, "Great drive, guys. Let's kick the extra point." Then he notices his phone buzzing.

RAY FARMER: What R U Doin?

Pettine types, "XP."

(buzzzz)

FARMER: Go 4 2!

He types, "Connor Shaw is QB. Offense sputtering. Bad idea."

(Browns shank extra point)

(Awkward sideline silence)

Pettine types, "You mad, bro?"

Pittsburgh Steelers

The Steelers decide to go for two, but Le'Veon Bell is suspended, DeAngelo Williams is injured and all the other running backs are in the doghouse for either fumbling in practice or looking at Todd Haley the wrong way. Baron Batch comes straight off the waiver wire and loses two yards.

AFC South

Houston Texans

Arian Foster shakes off three tacklers and dives for a conversion. J.J. Watt somehow gets credit.

Indianapolis Colts

Michael Conroy/Associated Press

Andrew Luck fumbles. Trent Richardson somehow gets blamed.

Jacksonville Jaguars

Something desperate and sad happens, which becomes the only thing national fans remember about the Jaguars all year.

Tennessee Titans

Ken Whisenhunt instructs Marcus Mariota to use his athleticism and creativity to roll right after an option-fake, read one side of the defense and either dive for the pylon or put the ball in a corner of the end zone where only Dorial Green-Beckham can get it.

Just kidding!

Whisenhunt orders Mariota to take a seven-step drop, stand perfectly still and thread a needle Kurt Warner could barely thread in 2008.

AFC West

Denver Broncos

Adding 13 yards to extra-point kicks has little effect in the Mile High environment. The Broncos still manage to miss one against the Patriots.

Kansas City Chiefs

Andy Reid calls two timeouts to really think things over, then orders a one-yard pass to Jamaal Charles.

Oakland Raiders

Dec 14, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; Oakland Raiders kicker Sebastian Janikowski (11) kicks the point after touchdown during the second half against the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium. The Chiefs won 31-13. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY
Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

SEBASTIAN JANIKOWSKI SCOFFS AT YOUR PUNY EFFORTS TO MAKE EXTRA POINTS DIFFICULT.

San Diego Chargers

San Diego gives up kicking extra points in Week 3, after all 12 centers and long snappers it brought to training camp are injured. It gives up running for two-pointers in Week 7, after all its running backs are injured. The Chargers lose a lot of 21-18 games in December.

NFC East

Dallas Cowboys

"I think our strategy has to be to use our offensive line as an asset in two-point situations," Jerry Jones tells a reporter, "whether it's so Tony can find Dez on a fade or we run the belly or dive with Adria … ahh… DeMarc … ah, that Dunbar kid.

"What does Coach Garrett think?" the reporter asks.

"…Who?" Jones responds.

New York Giants

Tom Coughlin fails to pull his two-point conversion chart and playbook out of his sock in time. The Giants get a delay-of-game penalty on a windy day in the Meadowlands. Josh Brown misses a 37-yard extra point. The Giants lose, 21-19. Coughlin signs a two-year extension.

Philadelphia Eagles

Immediately after Sam Bradford hands off to DeMarco Murray for a touchdown, Chip Kelly trades Bradford for LeSean McCoy and Murray for Nick Foles. Foles fakes to McCoy and scores on a read-option. The play is dubbed The Takesy Backsey.

Washington Redskins

"Why didn't you go for two late in the game?" a reporter asks Jay Gruden.

"I didn't trust my quarterback to get the job done in that situation," Gruden says.

"You don't trust your quarterback to throw a two-yard pass?" the reporter asks.

Feb 18, 2015; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Washington Redskins coach Jay Gruden speaks at a press conference during the 2015 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

"No. He wasn't executing well," Gruden says. "He needs to make better decisions with the ball. We figured kicking the extra point then counting on him to lead a long, complex drive to take the lead made more sense."

"Coach, quick: Which quarterback was in the game at that point. Was it RG3, Kirk Cousins or Colt McCoy?"

"… Next question."

NFC North

Chicago Bears

After being sacked on several two-point attempts, his face contorting into a new type of contempt mask after each one, Jay Cutler tells reporters, "You see a new rule, I see a new whole way to disappoint."

Detroit Lions

Every two-point conversion event ends in a reinterpretation of the definition of a catch. At one point, Calvin Johnson catches a sidearm Matt Stafford fastball between his teeth, but the Lions are penalized because he removed his helmet. No one complains until something similar happens to the Cowboys.

Green Bay Packers

Needing a two-point conversion to clinch a trip the Super Bowl, a backup tight end gets confused and lines up at the 15-yard line. The illegal formation moves the Packers back to the 7-yard line. John Kuhn runs up the middle for precisely two yards, then races to the sideline for a Lambeau Leap. The crowd yells "Kuuuuuhhhhhn" anyway, because the game is in Seattle.

Minnesota Vikings

After each successful Adrian Peterson two-point conversion, Peterson's agent body-slams Rick Spielman in the owner's suite.

NFC South

Atlanta Falcons

Matt Ryan tries to sneak every two-point conversion and gets stuffed. Oh wait, Mike Smith was fired. The Falcons do something sound and conventional instead.

Carolina Panthers

Cam Newton escapes all four defensive linemen and floats the ball into the corner of the end zone to a wide receiver no one has ever heard of. Ron Rivera is praised for another riverboat gamble. Newton is criticized for leaving the pocket.

New Orleans Saints

The Saints currently have two no-name kickers on the roster (Dustin Hopkins and Zach Hocker) and about 75 cents in available cap space. Combine a longer extra point with Sean Payton's luck with novice kickers, and John Carney will be getting paid in hush puppies to kick extra points by December.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

May 8, 2015; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston (3) works out for rookie mini camp at One Buc Place. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Jameis Winston throws a two-point conversion directly into quintuple coverage. The ball is intercepted, but the defender fumbles when running for a score the other way. The ball bounces into Winston's hands, and he floats a conversion to Mike Evans. Twitter explodes like a hot-take volcano. Lovie Smith plays it off like the pass was executed as diagrammed.

NFC West

Arizona Cardinals

With all of his other quarterbacks injured, Bruce Arians sends Logan Thomas onto the field for a two-point conversion with four tight ends and a fullback. Arians then orders Thomas to kneel so a negative play does not impede his development.

St. Louis Rams

Teams load up to stuff inside handoffs to Todd Gurley, and nothing else works when the Rams go for two. "Dang it, can't anyone around here draw up a pass play that gains exactly two yards?" Jeff Fisher screams on the sideline. Somewhere in Georgia, Brian Schottenheimer switches off his television and grins.

San Francisco 49ers

As the ball is being snapped for an extra point, both holder Andy Lee and kicker Phil Dawson suddenly retire. The ball bounces to a stop near midfield. No one bothers chasing it.

Seattle Seahawks

David Goldman/Associated Press

Marshawn Lynch, Russell Wilson and Jimmy Graham pound out over a dozen regular-season two-point conversions with plunges, options and back-of-the-end-zone jump balls. Then, in the Super Bowl? A weird pass into heavy traffic to David Gilreath that is easily intercepted, followed by two months of passionate justification.

Mike Tanier covers the NFL for Bleacher Report.

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