Gridiron Victoria (GV) – always at the forefront of innovation in Australian Gridiron – will be implementing a “5th Down” for the 2013 Senior Season.
In the face of improving defenses and with scoring at record lows over recent years, GV is seeking to create opportunities for the offensive side of the ball to get into the endzone.
“It is really all about scoring. Defense stifles the flow and excitement of American Football and the constant feedback we get from the public is more big plays and touchdowns” said a spokesperson for Gridiron Victoria.
an extra down will enable offenses to get out of critical situations, particularly the dreaded ‘3rd and long’ Gridiron Victoria
“We have long held the view that 4 downs is simply insufficient to advance the ball 10 yards in the modern era and an extra down will enable offenses to get out of critical situations, particularly the dreaded ‘3rd and long'” they added.
The Victorian Gridiron Officials Association (VGOA) indicated they were happy with the rule change and had placed an order for a hybrid marker which carries the 5th down panel.
GV expects scoring to increase 15-20% in the first year with the Juniors and Female competitions expected to also incorporate the 5th down later in the season.
The decision was made following an emergency board meeting of the GV Executive in the early hours of April 1.