Rookie running back Najee Harris of the Pittsburgh Steelers is the latest competitor to find out an NFL game can end in a tie … by playing in a tie.
In what turned out to have been an unexpected win, the Steelers hosted the winless Detroit Lions Sunday. Ugly contest. After 60 minutes, the game was tied at 16-16. The game went into overtime. Ryan Santoso missed the field goal attempt and the Lions had a chance at winning it with a 48 yard kick. The Steelers missed their chance at a game-winning kick when rookie tight end Pat Freiermuth gave the ball to Detroit in the final seconds.
The game was over one play later when the Lions tried to lateral their way into a goal zone. Harris believed there was still more football to be played.
“I didn’t even know you could tie in the NFL,” Harris said, via ESPN’s Brooke Pryor. “In my mind, I was sitting on the bench saying, ‘I’ve got another quarter to go.’ But someone came to me and said, ‘That’s it.’ I’ve never had a tie in my life before.”
While Sunday’s matchup was just the ninth NFL game for Harris, ties have become almost an annual tradition in the league over the last 10 years. Here’s a look at how the NFL’s modified overtime rules have changed things, as well as which games have ended in a stalemate.
What are the NFL’s overtime rules?
In 2017, regular-season games tied after 60 minutes have a 10-minute overtime period. The 15-minute time limit was once mandatory, but it has been shortened to protect the player.
If the team with possession wins within those 10 minutes, they will win the game. The other team can try to even the game by kicking a field goal on the first possession. The team that takes possession first kicks a field goal on that possession. If neither team scores, the next score is the winner. The game ends in a tie if neither team scores during the 10 minutes.
For a full explanation of the NFL’s overtime rules, click Here.
What’s the difference between NFL and NCAA overtime rules?
There is a stark difference between the NFL’s overtime rules and the NCAA’s overtime rules.
Overtime periods in college football are two-minute long. Each team has one chance to attack and defend. Offenses begin at the opposing team’s 25-yard line and trade possessions until one team scores more in a given overtime. In previous years, touchdown teams would have to make two-point conversions starting with the third overtime. This would continue until someone scores more in an OT period.
2019 saw a change in the rule so that teams could no longer drive from the 25 yard line after reaching the fifth overtime. Instead, the teams alternate two-point conversion plays until they determine the winner. Fans witnessed this play out in extreme. fashionIn October, we will be back Illinois upset Penn StateA marathon of nine overtime.
Harris was on the biggest stage of college football when Alabama beat Georgia in overtime on Jan. 8, 2018.
How many NFL games have ended in tie?
The NFL has 27 regular-season matches that have ended in a tie, since 1974 when it introduced a sudden death overtime rule. The AFL and NFL did not have overtime rules in place for regular-season games.
Between 1974-2011, the last year before NFL’s overtime rule was modified, 17 ties were made out of 494 regular season games. This is 3.4%.
Five ties (6.0%) were recorded between 2012-2016, the final year before current NFL overtime rules came into effect. These ties occurred in 83 regular season games.
Week 10 2012 St. Louis Rams 24, San Francisco 49ers 24
2013 Week 12 Minnesota Vikings 26, Green Bay Packers26
2014, Week 6 Carolina Panthers 37, Cincinnati Bengals 37
2016, Week 7Seattle Seahawks 6, Arizona Cardinals 6.
Week 8 of 2016: Washington 27, Cincinnati Bengals 27
From Week 10 of the 2021 NFL regular-season game to Week 10, there were five ties (8.1%) between the start of 2017 and Week 10.
2018, Week 1Pittsburgh Steelers 21, Cleveland Browns 21
Week 2 of 2018: Minnesota Vikings 29, Green Bay Packers 28
2019, Week 1Detroit Lions 27, Arizona Cardinals27
Week 3 of 2020: Cincinnati Bengals 23, Philadelphia Eagles 23
2021, Week 10Detroit Lions 16, Pittsburgh Steelers 16.
Which NFL team has the most historical ties?
The Chicago BearsThe most ties are 42, but all were before 1974.
The Green Bay Packers are the team with the most tie since the NFL’s first regular-season overtime rules. They have six. The Philadelphia Eagles are next with five ties, while four other teams have four.
Here’s the complete leaderboard for NFL ties starting in 1974.
1. Green Bay Packers (6)
2. Philadelphia Eagles (5)
T-3. Arizona Cardinals (4)
T-3. Cincinnati Bengals (4)
T-3. Minnesota Vikings (4)
T-3. Steelers of Pittsburgh (4)
7. Detroit Lions (3)
T-8. Atlanta Falcons (2)
T-8. Cleveland Browns (2)
T-8. Denver Broncos (2)
T-8. Kansas City Chiefs (2)
T-8. Los Angeles Rams (2)
T-8. San Francisco 49ers (2)
T-8. Washington Football Team (2)
T-17. Baltimore Ravens (1)
T-17. Carolina Panthers (1)
T-17. Indianapolis Colts (1)
T-17. Miami Dolphins (1)
T-17. Seattle Seahawks (1)
T-17. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1)
The Buffalo Bills and Dallas Cowboys, Houston Texans and Jacksonville Jaguars, Las Vegas Raiders, Los Angeles Chargers. New England PatriotsThe Bears join the New Orleans Saints, Tennessee Titans and other teams that have never had a tie since 1974. The only NFL teams that have never had a tie are the Jaguars and the Texans.