Last week, the commissioner of the National Football League, Roger Goodell, proposed an interesting idea–abolishing the extra point after a touchdown. (As an aside, check out Aaron Gordon’s excellent behavioral analysis of this proposal.) But if we’re going to reform the rules of the game, why not start with the lowly field goal? Specifically, why is the value of a field goal the same (3 points) independent of the length of the field goal attempt? Shouldn’t longer field goal attempts be worth more points than shorter one? In short, why not consider creating a four-point field goal line at the 50-yard line (similar to the three-point line in basketball) so that field goal attempts from beyond the 50-yard line would be worth four instead of just three points?
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