The NFL has made a number of changes and adaptations over the years to try to keep as much of its viewing audience as possible. It seems interesting to many that they now are considering eliminating or modifying kickoffs in the game as well.
For the 2018 season the NFL has said that kickoffs are here to stay, but they are looking into ways to modify them to make them safer for players says Bleacher Report. The NCAA has already made some changes to how it will have kickoffs work at the college level. They are interested in allowing players to signal for a fair catch anywhere within the twenty-five yard line and have it count as a touchback.
Back in 2011 the NFL moved kickoffs up five yards and noticed a forty-three percent decrease in concussions on kickoffs in that season compared to the season before when the rule was different. Even a minor tweak like that can prevent so many injuries from even happening in the first place. The NCAA believes that the new fair catch rule will help as well.
Full-speed collisions in football have been a major problem that are believed to a big factor in the number of head injuries that the sport has seen in recent years. That is a big incentive for the NFL to try to reduce this problem or even eliminate it entirely in the future. Speculation is that the NFL is moving towards a complete elimination of kickoffs from the game at all.
Kickoffs are probably what resemble rugby the most in football. They are brutal in some cases and can actually cause a lot of bodily harm. Couple that with the fact that kickoffs are often uneventful and not all that helpful to the overall strategy of most teams and you can see why they may not be the most helpful part of the game.
The league has continued to try to improve player safety after facing a number of criticisms from fans and even Hollywood over how it was treating its players and its lack of response to do what it needed to do in order to make the game safer. If those charges are fair or not is up to the fans to decide, but the fact that the league is doing so much regarding player safety probably gives you an idea about how the league feels about things themselves.