The 2022 season has so far had its fair share of crucial roughing-the-passer penalties, and the topic was discussed at Tuesday’s Fall League Meeting in New York.

NFL executive vice president of football operations Troy Vincent said there was a “healthy” and “spirited” conversation surrounding that specific penalty during the football operations session. Vincent, however, maintained that the league will continue to prioritize the protection of quarterbacks.

“Everyone knows if your quarterback is not healthy, you don’t have a chance to win,” Vincent told reporters on Tuesday. “We’re not changing the philosophy around that call. … We’re not going to back off of protecting the quarterback.”

The penalty has certainly drummed up controversy this season. In Week 5, Falcons defensive tackle Grady Jarrett was flagged for roughing the passer after slinging Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady to the ground on a critical third-down late in the fourth quarter. Chris Jones’ strip-sack of Derek Carr also was negated the following Monday night after it was deemed that the Chiefs defensive lineman’s body weight crashed down on the Raiders QB.

Asked specifically about those two plays, Vincent said that the call on Jarrett is one you’d “not like to see” but “philosophically, you can support it.”

“The game is not softer,” added Vincent. “It’s a different game. It’s a safer game.”

Rich McKay, chairman of the NFL’s competition committee, told reporters on Tuesday that roughing-the-passer penalties are actually down compared to years past at this point in the season. Through Week 6, there were 53 in 2018, 59 in 2019, 43 in 2020, 52 in 2021 and 38 so far in 2022, per McKay.

“We’re never going to bat 1.000 on officiating,” McKay said. “We’re never going to have every call that we agree with.”

The league will review rouging-the-passer calls this offseason, but there will be no changes during this season, McKay said. As for making the penalty reviewable, McKay said there was a brief discussion but it appears that instituting such a rule will be an uphill climb.

Said McKay: “When you decide to review subjective fouls, then you’re going to have subjective eyes on something that’s already been viewed once.”

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