The NFL wants to make punts safer. How to do it? A Shark Tank-style event where creative fans pitch their ideas to improve the game, and a panel of judges decides which pitch they like best.
That’s what happened today on the campus of Georgia Tech, where a panel of judges that included Falcons coach Dan Quinn heard from data analysts about proposals that might reduce the number and severity of collisions on punts. The event, called “First and Future,” is part of an NFL initiative to crowdsource ideas to improve the game.
The two winners of the competition were Halla Yang and Alex Wainger, both of whom proposed rules that would result in more fair catches. Yang suggested incentivizing more fair catches by giving the receiving team five yards after…