For a room filled with thirty two of the smartest businessmen/women in the world, the National Football League owners sure do some dumb things.
The new rule for 2014 — or one of them, at least — will penalize a player who dunks the football over the goalpost as a post-play form of celebration. This is loosely called the “Jimmy Graham rule” as the Saints’ tight end makes dunking the ball over the goalpost part of his touchdown celebration. Two games were delayed last season after Graham altered the goalpost with his dunk and stadium employees had to repair it before play could continue.
Fair enough. The games are already long enough without having to stand around for ten minutes while a couple of guys grab a ladder and a level and fix the goalpost.
This, though, is the way the NFL handles such trivial things as what a guy does with the football after a touchdown.
Forget that it’s entertaining and the crowd digs it and the player has some freedom of expression.
They handle the dilemma by just eliminating the entire act instead of figuring out a way to allow it with, perhaps, a penalty in the event part of the playing field is altered, such as knocking the goalpost out of alignment.
The league’s official rule doesn’t say players can’t dunk the ball, rather it simply says, now, “the football can not be used as a prop for a touchdown celebration.”
Now the refs have to add to their list of things to evaluate, “was the ball used as a prop there?”
They’re a group of smart people, those NFL owners, but some of things they bother themselves with is outright dumb.
In sixteen weeks of football, the goalpost is knocked out of alignment once or twice. Not once or twice a week. Once, twice, maybe three times in the entire season. And for that, they’ve eliminated it from the game.
I can’t wait for them to vote on whether or not it’s OK for owners of teams to get caught drunk driving.