NFL rule changes bring some fun back to the No Fun League
- Author: Angelo Rivera May 26, 2017,
May 26, 2017, 8:12
After significant backlash against needless fines and penalties, the No Fun League seemed to hear the concerns of both players and fans that the game should be fun and entertaining, and removing a player's natural emotional expression after scoring a touchdown should be a part of the festivities. The NFL announced on Tuesday that its players will have more freedom of expression in 2017 as it will ease up on their previous rules regarding celebrations.
Some of these rule changes include a shorter overtime period, more leniency regarding touchdown celebrations, and a shorter cut-down period in the preseason. Using the ball as a prop, celebrating on the ground and group demonstrations will now all be legal.
Following a sharp rise in so-called "demonstration" penalties last season, with players fined for what was considered excessive celebrations, the league has amended the rules governing what players can and can't do after a touchdown.
"In my conversations with National Football League players", Goodell continued, "it was also clear how much our players care about sportsmanship, clean competition, and setting good examples for young athletes".
Any celebrations deemed offensive will still be penalized, including suggestive dancing (sorry, guys, still no twerking), ridiculing opponents and mimicking weapon use.
Team will now cut their roster from 90 players to 53 days before the regular season.
According to NFL Research, in the last five seasons more than a quarter of overtime games lasted at least 10 minutes, while the average overtime duration was 7 minutes and 43 seconds. It will reduce the number of plays in overtime, following a season in which more games than usual exceeded 70 total minutes. Players are happy, fans are happy, and the NFL is shifting away from the "No Fun League" mantra. "Frankly, we want them focusing on the game and the rules so that was our feedback".
Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis right, speaks to the media during a break from an National Football League owners meeting Tuesday, May 23, 2017, in Chicago. Goodell says the new guidelines are meant to deliver "a more exciting game experience". Teams could be more inclined to take risks in overtime, searching for the win instead of the tie.
Personally, I love this rule, as I feel like the old rules of players not being able to come off IR are outdated.
The league's Super Bowl hosting schedule also shifted, with Tampa, Fla., set to host the 2021 game.
As NFL Network's Judy Battista pointed out, the rule change is aimed at helping improve player safety.