These type of topic always make me feel a bit silly because I think everyone posting is much more concerned with letting others know their opinions rather than listening to others. But hey, I'm a cynical ass hole. Anyway...
1) as a kicker. My wife and I are each below 5'5" so my answer here is moot.
2) as long as there's money there it will be successful as is. The players will continue to play because athletes have an invincibility complex when they are young and healthy.
3) I can't honestly think of anything that would make the game "safe" and keep me as interested in it as I am now.