New rules set forth by the National Football League are attempting to make a dangerous game safer. This season, if a defensive player deliberately leads with their helmet, whether that be on offense or defense, they can be ejected for unnecessary roughness. We’ve already seen the NFL’s new “body weight” penalty come into effect numerous times, which is affecting the outcome of games early in the season.
With new rules in the NFL comes an adapted approach to the way football will be played into the future at all levels. Leave it to one of the NFL’s best defensive players of this decade to help transition the violent game into something totally different, and maybe even more effective.
Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller knows a thing or two about rushing the quarterback. The MVP of Super Bowl 50 is a six-time Pro Bowl selection and a six-time All-Pro. With 4.0 sacks already to start the 2018 season, Miller has moved into the Top 50 on the NFL’s all-time list with 87.5 career sacks.
On SB Nation radio’s Pushing the Odds with Matt Perrault, Von Miller was asked how tough it is to play defense with the new rules protecting quarterbacks and ridding the league of illegal hits.
“Football is already tough,” the Texas A&M alum said. “You know, I totally understand the emphasis on protecting the quarterback, but it’s tough. It’s a tough situation.”
So, how is one of the NFL’s best defensive players adapting to the new rule changes?
“For me, what usually works is I just go for the ball every time. I’m going for the ball no matter what. If I’m free, if I have a clean shot at the quarterback, I’m going for that ball. I feel like a sack-forced fumble is the biggest play in football, especially for me at my position, and that’s what I’m trying to do each and every time.” — Von Miller
Miller added, “It’s all about the ball for me, it’s not really about the quarterback.”
Since entering the NFL in 2011, Miller leads all players with 24 forced fumbles, and he also leads all players in sacks.
The second overall pick in the 2011 NFL Draft has been attacking the football even before these new rules were put in place, and they aren’t going to stop him from continuing to terrorize NFL quarterbacks.
The 29-year-old, who was a two-time First-Team All-American in college and earned his college degree in Poultry Science and raises chickens in his spare time, is a football savant.
They say great players change the games they play. Well, Von Miller has been doing it since before we even knew what the “body weight” penalty was.