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What to know about rule proposals and more at 2017 NFL owners meetings

PHOENIX -- The NFL's Annual Meeting kicked off Sunday evening, and ClevelandBrowns.com has boots on the ground to cover all the news that emerges from the Arizona Biltmore.

Here are the most important topics that will be discussed and voted upon.

-- The speed and pace of the game might be the biggest topic on the agenda. We know that because it was a central theme in a letter published by commissioner Roger Goodell last week.

Goodell, who addressed the letter to fans of the NFL, shared that the league launched a project last year to analyze the live-viewing and in-game experience. Now, Goodell wants the league to make the necessary improvements.

"Consistently, we heard from fans that we can improve in two key areas: the flow and pace of the game, and commercialization and the number of unnecessary disruptions to the game on the field," Goodell wrote.

A rules proposal to centralize replay, which would replace the customary sideline monitor with a tablet and require the referee to work in tandem with an official in the league office in New York, is geared toward speeding up the game and eliminating unnecessary delays. The league official, not the referee, will have the final call on debated plays.

"This should improve consistency and accuracy of decisions and help speed up the process," Goodell wrote.

Some other minor tweaks include instituting a play clock between extra points and ensuing kickoffs when there is no commercial break and standardizing halftime lengths and the starting of the clock after a player runs out of bounds.

-- A play that is right up Browns linebacker Jamie Collins' Sr.'s alley could be banned if owners approve one of the most notable rule proposals.

Players would no longer be allowed to leap over the line of scrimmage to block field goals and extra points if the proposal passes. The motivation behind the proposal is player safety. Under current rules, a player is penalized if he makes contact with opposing players while leaping over the line of scrimmage but is not if he completely clears it.

-- Speaking of safety, another rules proposal would make certain types of hits and plays cause for immediate ejection. Another would give more protection to wide receivers, who would receive "defenseless player" designation at the start of their route.

-- On the table is a literal game-changer, as overtime periods in the preseason and regular season would go from 15 minutes to 10 minutes. For what it's worth, the Browns fell to the Steelers in the 2016 season finale after Pittsburgh scored a touchdown roughly 12 minutes into the overtime period.

-- Two of the most significant rule changes from last year's meetings -- moving touchbacks from the 20-yard line to the 25 and ejecting players who commit two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties in the same game -- are up for ratification after one-year trials.

-- Coaches from around the league, including Cleveland's Hue Jackson, will meet with reporters Tuesday and Wednesday. AFC coaches will participate in a breakfast with media Tuesday and NFC coaches will do the same Wednesday. Goodell will close out the meetings with a press conference Wednesday.

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