20, 30 years ago, by far the most common tackling style was for a defender to wrap up the ball carrier and drag him to the ground.

In the last 10 years, glancing tackles have become a lot more common. The kind where they just hit the ball carrier with no attempt to wrap their arms around him.

Why is this? What's the advantage and disadvantage to this type of tackle, and why has it become more prominent in the NFL?

1 Answer 1


The only reason for this is because of the concussion protocols they have to follow. I to have seen this but the only reason they do that is to

  1. Not get penalized
  2. Stay Safe

Like the hit to Antonio Brown By Vontaze Burfict you could do that 20 - 30 years ago but not know because of all of the rules. Just because of the rules they are doing this.

Advantage is to stay safe but an disadvantage is that it is not very effective sometimes.

  • 2
    I don't see how not wrapping up follows from safety/concussion. Wrapping up is the safer way to tackle, as opposed to glancing hits which have to be harder and therefore more likely to cause concussions.
    – Joe
    Commented Dec 23, 2020 at 22:22

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