The Colts saw safety Shamarko Thomas ejected for a helmet-to-helmet hit in their first preseason game and they saw two defensive players flagged for violating the league’s new rules governing the use of the helmet in their second game, so they find themselves squarely in the group of teams trying to find ways to avoid flags while making tackles in the coming season.
Defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus is teaching a technique he hopes will help on that front. It’s derived from the 1920s when players did not have facemasks and is called a hamstring tackle. Per Stephen Holder of The Athletic, it calls for players to “turn his face away from the ball carrier” while targeting the thighs and hamstrings of a ball carrier.
The hope is that the position of the head shows officials that players are not leading with the helmet when they make tackles.
“So, the helmet is clearly on the outside, we are hitting with the top of our shoulder pads, our aiming point is between the waist and the knees – so it’s a lower aiming point – and we…