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XFL Rules AMA with Blandino

The XFL announced its reimagined rules for the 2020 season Tuesday.

To celebrate and see what our fans wanted to know, XFL head of officiating Dean Blandino took over the official XFL Reddit account and hosted an 'Ask Me Anything' session.

Recap the full event and read some A.M.A. highlights below:

What new rule do you think will most affect how the game is going to be played overall?

Blandino: I think the play clock at 25 seconds will have the biggest impact. Teams will have to be more efficient getting lined up, getting substitutions in the game, etc. The pace will be different than what we are used to in some cases.

Hey Dean, what offensive schemes do you see these teams running relative to the confines of these new rules? Also, do you know if these teams' stadiums will serve helmet nachos at the games?

Blandino: I feel like with the college ineligibles and blocking downfield rules we are doing to see different variations of the screen game quite a bit.

I sure hope they serve helmet nachos at games.

How will onside kicks work?

Blandino: A team will have to notify the officials before they attempt an onside kick. At that point it will look more like a traditional kickoff. The kicking team and return team will be 10 yards apart and the kicking team will get a 5-yard run up. Normal rules apply. Ball has to go 10 yards or touched by return team first before kickers can recover.

Do you have any new technology in the XFL that you think will make officiating easier? What do you think the best part of being an XFL ref will be?

Blandino: We will be using HawkEye technology for our replay system that will allow us to look at multiple camera angles as soon as the play is over, rather than have to wait for it to be shown on TV. This will make the process more efficient.

[Answering the second question] I think it will be awesome to be a part of something from the beginning and see it grow.

Dean Blandino, one of the most well-respected officials in the game, oversees the XFL officiating program. He has played a key role in the league’s rules development and recruited some of the country’s best football officials to work all XFL games when the league kicks off on Feb. 8. In most cases, the officials come from the power five collegiate conferences and will be announced mid-January. Blandino served as the NFL’s Vice President of Officiating from 2013 to 2017.