San Francisco 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman is not a fan of the NFL's new stricter helmet targeting rule, which was approved by team owners this week. The league has outlawed the technique of a player lowering his helmet toward the target while tackling.

"It is a foul if a player lowers his head to initiate and make contact with his helmet against an opponent," reads the new rule. The penalty for committing the foul is a loss of 15 yards. If committed by a defensive player, it will result in an automatic first down and the player may be disqualified.

"It's ridiculous," Sherman told Mike Jones of USA Today via text message. "Like telling a driver if you touch the lane lines, you're getting a ticket. (It's) gonna lead to more lower-extremity injuries."

The rule change has also alarmed other defensive players like Washington Redskins cornerback Josh Norman.

"I don't know how you're going to play the game," Norman said. "If your helmet comes in contact? How are you going to avoid that if you're in the trenches and hit a running back, facemask to facemask and accidentally graze the helmet?"

Norman went on to say that he believes it will be challenging for players to alter their approaches to tackling even if a significant portion of practice time is devoted to improving techniques.

"It's not going to do anything," he continued. "I don't know any other way to play. I understand trying to be safer, I get it. We saw what happened to (Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker) Ryan Shazier, and I get it and understand that, but at the same time, it's football. I don't know what other way to say it but it's football."

12-year veteran linebacker Lorenzo Alexander agrees with Sherman and Norman.

"It continues to put us in a predicament," Alexander said. "In our mind, it makes it hard to play defense in this league. In my mind, there needs to be more of a common-sense approach to it. … It is football at the end of the day. There are going to be injuries that you can't avoid. You can't legislate everything out."

The rule is not in place just for players on the defensive side of the football. Players on offense could be penalized should they lead with their helmet.

"Multiple players expressed concern about split-second decisions, citing an example of a quarterback ducking his head to brace for a hit, and then drawing contact from a pass rusher," wrote Jones. "They wondered who would be at fault in that case."