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Pull Out A Sharpie, Get A 15-yard Penalty


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Instead of giving the individual player the fine, now the whole team will feel it. I wonder if they would call back the touchdown and move them back 15 yards or will it be 15 yards on the kickoff?

Story: Link.

NEW YORK -- The NFL discovered last season that fines did not necessarily stop its millionaire players from flamboyant celebrations.

So the league is planning to make any such demonstration an automatic 15-yard penalty.

?  This has nothing to do with the Lambeau leap, the spike, the sack dance or throwing the ball over the goal post. But the demonstrations are becoming more sophisticated and more pre-planned than they've ever been. That's why we focused on a penalty instead of just a fine. ?

  ? Falcons GM Rich McKay

The new penalty policy has been recommended unanimously by the league's competition committee and is likely to receive approval from the owners when they begin their annual spring meeting Sunday in Palm Beach, Fla.

"Don't call us the no fun league," Atlanta general manager Rich McKay, co-chairman of the league's competition committee, said Wednesday during a conference call.

"This has nothing to do with the Lambeau leap, the spike, the sack dance or throwing the ball over the goal post. But the demonstrations are becoming more sophisticated and more pre-planned than they've ever been. That's why we focused on a penalty instead of just a fine."

As it has been for nearly 20 years, the longest discussions at the meetings will be over instant replay. The committee has recommended that it be installed permanently for the first time -- it has been put in from year-to-year until 2001, when it was extended to three years.

But the most interesting sign of the times is that the NFL now considers penalties more effective than fines in curbing demonstrations. There were 46 fines for demonstrations last season compared to 18 in 2002, indicating to McKay and the committee that fines were not a deterrent.

The new penalties would be added to those for taunting.

After Terrell Owens celebrated a score by pulling a pen from his sock and signing a football in 2002, commissioner Paul Tagliabue made it clear such future demonstrations would be penalized. And the officials did call a penalty last season when Joe Horn made a call on a cell phone after scoring a touchdown.

But the recommendation would add the demonstration penalty to the rule book. McKay said it was prompted in part by letters from the NCAA and national high school associations worried that the conduct of NFL players set bad examples.

As for replay, it was first instituted in 1986, voted out in 1992, then brought back in 1999 in its current form -- with the coaches' challenge system.

The new proposal would make it permanent -- instead of needing 24 of the 32 teams to approve it each year, it would require 24 votes to vote it out. The competition committee also is recommending that any coach who gets two successful challenges in a game get one more.

"We think it's ready to go in permanently," McKay said of replay. "We've been voting on it for 20 years now. This way we won't have to vote on it anymore."

Among the other items to be discussed at the meetings will be expanding the playoffs to 14 teams and allowing both teams to get a possession in overtime.

The committee voted against both -- McKay noted that the number of overtime games decided on the first possession had declined from 36 percent in 2002 to 23 percent in 2004. He also noted that adding two more teams to the playoffs would give the No. 1 team an unfair advantage by getting the only bye.

"We feel like the current system has worked extremely well," McKay said.

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Terrell Owens better not pull any stunts like that with the Eagles, we dont need him to cost the Eagles any games...

Eh it is not big deal, we get penalized for something stupid like every set of downs. It is usually Runyan doing something stupid on the front line.

@XT, I know what you mean. I like watching the antics too, they just add to making the game more enjoyable.

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I dont like this. Celebration is part of the game. The fans enjoy the elaborate celebrations.. or at least everyone ive talked to does. It doesnt hurt anyone, and by no means has it hurt the popularity of the game. If anything, these should increase the intensity on the field by ****ing off the other team. 15 yard penalty is not the way to go.. not cool.. what they need to fix is overtime. Sudden Death in football is BS.

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what they need to fix is overtime. Sudden Death in football is BS.

Yea I agree, the OTs should last the entire quater and whoever is ontop at the end should win or else go onto another OT if tied.

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Yea I agree, the OTs should last the entire quater and whoever is ontop at the end should win or else go onto another OT if tied.

i dont necessarily agree with that. The sudden death concept is not totally wrong, but both teams should have a possession. Here's how i think it should go.

Team 1 receives kickoff. If they score, other team gets the ball. If the other team ties the game, then they kick back off to team 1, and it becomes sudden death. If team 2 takes the lead, game over. If the first team does not score on their first drive, the game becomes sudden death. Basically, after the first drive it becomes sudden death. I just think both teams should be able to touch the ball once.

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Yup, just make NFL OT's like the NBA. I don't think it'd ever go into double OT, really. Maybe once every 3 years.

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The celebration sells. That's that. The nfl is killing the one thing that all other sports don't allow. The NFL is the most popular for a reason but this won't help its cause.

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i dont necessarily agree with that. The sudden death concept is not totally wrong, but both teams should have a possession. Here's how i think it should go.

Team 1 receives kickoff. If they score, other team gets the ball. If the other team ties the game, then they kick back off to team 1, and it becomes sudden death. If team 2 takes the lead, game over. If the first team does not score on their first drive, the game becomes sudden death. Basically, after the first drive it becomes sudden death. I just think both teams should be able to touch the ball once.

sounds like college OT except they dont kick the ball off

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sounds like college OT except they dont kick the ball off

yeah that, and i'm also saying that it shouldnt be able to get tied up more than once.. if both teams kick a FG for example, the next team to score wins the game.. thats how i think it ought to be.

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