CHICAGO (AP) — The NFL wants to put some flair back into touchdown celebrations, allowing players to use the football as a prop, celebrate as a group and roll around on the ground again if they choose.
In an email from Commissioner Roger Goodell sent to fans in an effort to deliver “a more exciting game experience,” the commissioner said the new guidelines came after conversations with more than 80 current and former players.
The league, however, will continue to penalize any celebration deemed offensive, including those that embarrass opponents or mimic the use of weapons.
“Players have told us they want more freedom to be able to express themselves,” Goodell wrote.
That freedom had been stripped in many cases, with fans and media criticizing the NFL as being the “No Fun League.” A 15-yard penalty often was the price paid for excessiveness.
Goodell’s email also mentioned how the league is placing an emphasis on speeding up the pace of games. To go with that, he said the league knows “that you love the spontaneous displays of emotion that come after a spectacular touchdown.”