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The NFL Is Gonna Send Teams Instructional Videos Telling Players Not To Twerk

 

The NFL, after years of cracking down on players displaying any visible signs of fun or personality while also failing to adequately define what is and is not a catch, has decided that in 2016, the most important things the referees can do is turn the game into a “Key and Peele” sketch. Plenty of people noticed the similarity when the Pittsburgh Steelers’ Anotonio Brown was flagged for twerking in the endzone.

The ref not throwing the flag until the third pelvic thrust was far too reminiscent of Hingle McCringleberry’s infamous three-pump infraction.

But it hasn’t just been Brown, who was actually penalized twice for twerking because how dare you try to stop Antonio Brown from twerking? According to ESPN, “Taunting calls this season have risen 220 percent compared to the first four weeks of last season, while other unsportsmanlike penalties — primarily for celebrations — are up 56 percent.” That’s absurd, and it seems a lot of the players have no idea what they are and aren’t allowed to do. The NFL has a solution: Instructional videos.

From Dean Blandino, senior vice president of officiating:

We certainly want the teams to have clarification, and this isn’t a new issue. We’ve been dealing with this in the past. And so we’re going to send a tape out in the next week or so and clarify some of these things. But the key is if it’s a gesture that either mimics a violent act — that’s something with a firearm or a bow and arrow — or a sexually suggestive act, those are unsportsmanlike conduct. That’s…something that officials will flag. That’s direct from the competition committee and something that we’re going to try to be as consistent as possible.

The “bow and arrow” line is in reference to Washington Redskins cornerback Josh Norman, fined for mimicking the shooting of a bow and arrow after an interception. It’s not entirely clear why it is the NFL has a problem with a football player mimicking a stereotype of his team’s mascot but is totally fine with that team’s name being a racial slur. It’s also unclear why the NFL is so terrified of pelvic thrusts.

Keep in mind this is a league with nationally televised games that often cut to and come back from commercials with shots of cheerleaders. I’m not entirely sure how well they are able to lead the fine folks in section 318, row Y in cheer, so I have to assume part of the reason they are there is for some sort of sex appeal. That’s all totally fine, but for some reason when it comes to what’s actually happening on the field we have to revert to Elvis on the “Ed Sullivan Show” rules for hip movement.

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