Remember those crass fines issued against players for their celebratory antics over the last few seasons? It now appears Commissioner Goodell has decided the No Fun League needs to apply some common sense to the rulebook. In a Statement issued last week, Goodell declared the league had made some changes to the rules affecting player celebrations.

“Earlier this spring, we announced plans to deliver a more exciting game experience, with changes to improve the pace of the game and minimise unnecessary disruptions to the action on the field. Today, we are excited to tell you about another change that comes after conversations with more than 80 current and former players: we are relaxing our rules on celebrations to allow players more room to have fun after the make big plays. We know that you love the spontaneous displays of emotion that come after a spectacular touchdown. And players have told us they want more freedom to be able to express themselves and celebrate their athletic achievements.”

The NFL provided a few examples of celebrations that would be allowed under the new policy:

  • Using the football as a prop after a TD
  • Celebrating on the ground
  • Group demonstrations

The commissioner’s statement continued:

“In my conversations with NFL players, it was also clear how much our players care about sportsmanship, clean competition, and setting good examples for young athletes. That is why offensive demonstrations, celebrations that are prolonged and delay the game, and those directed at an opponent, will still be penalised. We know we have more work to do. We are grateful to the many current and retired players who engaged with us on this topic and we look forward to ongoing dialogue with them as we contribute to work to improve this game we all love.”


Steelers’ talented wide receiver Antonio Brown, who made the highlight reels in 2015 when he made love to a goal post celebrating a touchdown is pleased with the change. After catching two touchdown passes against the Colts, Brown then returned a punt 71 yards for a touchdown and was obviously euphoric with his performance. He celebrated by leaping onto a goal post, but paid the price for his elation. The NFL levied an $11,576 fine for his festivity.

Of the new policy, Brown declared, “I am excited about it. I am looking forward to celebrating with my teammates and doing it the right way. I think it’s amazing. I am sure the guys are looking forward to it, the offensive linemen, some of the guys that don’t get to celebrate with the guys who get in the end zone. I think it will be fun.”

Gordon Dedman

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