Given the NFL’s penchant for meting out ridiculously unfair punishments and enforcing wildly unpopular rules, it’s hard to tell just who the league is focus-grouping nowadays. Though, in light of recent comments made by one of the league’s leading officials, maybe they’re just focus-grouping themselves.
Scott Green, head of the NFL’s Referee Association, gave an interview on SIRIUSXM NFL Radio where he made it known that NFL officials are just as unenthused about the league’s end zone celebration rules as the fans.
Green said, “Nothing is worse than someone going 80 yards for a touchdown and then we’re trying to figure out does that warrant a flag for what he’s doing in the end zone. We don’t really enjoy that.
“If we could get to a point where it would simply be fines by the league, that would be great. The issue we’ll still have is that guys can get pretty creative out there. The question of whether it’s a foul or not a foul, hopefully we’ll get closer to more of a black-and-white situation.”
So, to recap, NFL players hate the end zone celebration rule, the vast majority of NFL fans hate the celebration rule, most media hate the rule, and now the officials hate the rule. By process of elimination, this means that only Roger Goodell likes this rule, since no one else in the football-watching world seems to think it’s a good idea.
The idea put forth by Green makes sense. Moving to a system where excessive celebrations get punished by fine only prevents a penalty for excessive celebration altering the outcome of the game.
However, true to form, the NFL is taking a good idea and running away with their hair on fire. The NFL currently has a rule under consideration that only punishes on-the-field celebrations with penalties, stripping the issue of fines altogether.
This means the NFL might very well take a rule, which is almost universally reviled by all people not named Roger Goodell, and double down on it.
I wonder what Paul Tagliabue is up to nowadays?
Follow Dylan Gwinn on Twitter: @themightygwinn