League considers banning goal post dunk

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The NFL has been dubbed the “No Fun League” for restricting the things players can do to demonstrate excitement upon making a good play.  And if “fun” consists of demonstrations that possibly delay the game while a key piece of equipment is repaired, it’s a label the NFL may soon be gladly wearing.

Per a source with knowledge of the situation, the NFL currently is considering banning the practice of dunking the ball over the crossbar.

While not a formal proposal of the Competition Committee or any of the 32 teams, the topic is expected to be raised during the NFL’s annual meetings, which open Monday in Orlando.

When the NFL banned the use of props during celebrations, an exception was made for the goal post dunk and the Lambeau Leap.  Last year, however, Saints tight end Jimmy Graham knocked the crossber askew when jamming the ball over it with both hands during a Thursday night game against the Falcons.  Play was stopped so that maintenance workers could return the crossbar to its proper position.

If the NFL extends the uprights by five feet (as the Patriots have proposed), it becomes even more important to avoid applying extra force to the apparatus, given laws of physics that I once learned and then quickly expunged from my brain.  (Maybe it was the Iron City Beer.)

Until the owners decide what to do, we’ll put the issue to a vote.  But before casting your ballot, ask yourself if you really want to have games delayed while, as Dan Patrick put it yesterday, Bob Vila comes out with his toolbox and fixes the crossbar.

104 responses to “League considers banning goal post dunk

  1. Problem here is Graham and Gronk bend the goalpost most of the time. They should get penalized for that. That’s why the NFL is enforcing it. If they’d just dunk the ball w/o screwing with the GPs this wouldn’t be a discussion.

  2. Much better to pass newer and more convoluted rules that delay the game instead of allowing athletes to celebrate and engage the fans because of an exciting play that might delay the game a couple seconds…

  3. I guess I’m ambivalent about the goal post dunks, they aren’t unfun to watch, but really, whatever happened to just handing the ball to the ump and moving on…. I’d respect that more than dunks, spikes or dances that’s for sure….

    In fact, the if the NFL is going to ban something, it should be the stupid dances…sack dances and TD dances…

  4. If it causes a 10 minute delay of game for the maintenance crew to fix an un-level upright, then yes, I would think delay of game would actually be appropriate.

  5. It should’ve already been banned under the “using the ball as a prop” rule. But none of the meanies like Steve Smith, Chad Johnson or T.O. were doing it so the league let it slide.

    Imagine if one of those guys originated the Lambeau Leap. It would’ve been banned permanently the next day.

  6. No need to ban it outright, but call a delay of game penalty if a player knocks them askew forcing the ground crew to make repairs. Also give refs the option of unsportsman like conduct if a player hangs from the post like Graham did.

  7. I swear someone in the NFL stays up late at night just trying to figure out more ways to make the game less enjoyable. Be warned though, there’s a finite amount of fun, and once it’s all gone, there’s no fun left to be had. Take that as: No one will care or watch = No dollars

  8. Right. That one time they had to delay the game to repair the goal posts was much more obtrusive than the 348 commercial breaks during every single game, every single week.
    They’re a group of rich, old white men that get uncomfortable when players don’t celebrate like wasps at a polo game.

  9. Just ban it already…its waaay overplayed now. Besides, half the players who attempt it can’t even jump high enough to do it.

  10. Has anyone ever noticed the difference between the NFL and MLB when it comes to celebrations?

    In the MLB, when someone makes a gem of a diving play.. what do they do? They get up, dust off the dirt, and go about their business. They act as if they’ve done it a million times.

    Now in the NFL, a player tackles an RB for a 3-4 yard gain and what does he do.. he acts as if he had just won the Super Bowl.

    What is it about the NFL that makes its players crave that individual recognition so much that they celebrate anything and everything?

  11. The Dictator has enforced a new rule for the upcoming season: 15 yard penalty AND immediate ejection for any player showing any sort of emotion. This includes smiles, frowns, expression of disbelief, as well as any player caught on camera saying wow or unbelievable after witnessing a great play. Also being considered by Roger…a 15 yard penalty but NO ejection for any facial expression shown when a player is laying on the field with a serious injury.

  12. That’s the problem with the NFL….no one practices the mid range jump shot celebration anymore!

  13. I am a Saints season ticket holder and the people in the seats next to me rotate, or are usually sold to different people each week. And there are people who literally BUY TICKETS to the games, whose main reason to come to the games IN PERSON, is because THEY WANT TO SEE JIMMY GRAHAM DUNK THE BALL. They spend their money, they come to the game, and they are WAITING to see him do it, so they can cheer. Had a guy next to us last year with his young son, he wanted him to see Jimmy Graham DUNK THE BALL in person, as a shared memory.

    Way to go NFL, these are the fans that are paying your bills!

  14. Next rule change will be delay of game for leaping into the Dogpound, Black Hole, Lambeau, etc..

  15. Call it the “Jimmy” rule and penalize the scoring team 15 yards if, in the official’s judgement, the player acts like a jerk and causes an equipment repair delay.

  16. quit being stupid NFL. that goal post was not very sturdy get stronger goal posts and that wouldn’t happen or just let them dunk it and move on but if they hang on it like ” I’m Jimmy” did then make it a ten yard penalty

  17. If the fans were that unhappy with the game and weren’t buying tickets or watching on TV, then I could see trying to “fix” it. But the NFL was as popular as it has ever been and no one was crying about it. Leave the game alone, before it gets turned into something that is totally unrecognizable.

  18. Listen, I stuck by the NFL with the whole “no celebrating” rules thing. Clearing a bench for 1 score is too much. Those stupid TO and Ocho dances were too far. But come on! Leave a little fun in the game. It is a GAME after all. Fans want to see the players smiling and having a good time. And personally, I dont mind an extra 5 mins to grab a beer or start dinner if the goal post is slightly askew.

  19. 90% of the celebrations are really stupid anyway, so I don’t care. But what if they just said, “If you delay the game by skewing the goal post your team forfeits any extra points they would’ve been able to attempt.

    It’s too much temptation to grab and hold on… that would certainly make a player think twice.

  20. Why are the only extending the uprights a mere five feet?

    Every season or so it seems, we see a team get hosed because the refs have to use their legendary judgment and clearly blow it, on kicks over the uprights.

    Get stronger goal posts and raise them 25 feet — there’s no meaningful downside.

    And the upside is enormous — if we’re looking to get the game day results RIGHT.

    One could also make for automated enforcement of kicks – but we’ll table that for another discussion.

  21. What’s next, banning fans from cheering?

    If the team who got scored against doesn’t like it then don’t let the other guys score. Pretty simple concept.

  22. Let them still do it….
    However if the maintenance guys have to fix the goal post…… No kick off….. the team that just got scored on get s the ball on the other 35. 35 yards away from the endzone.

  23. The NFL is supposed to be in the entertainment business. I am thoroughly entertained by these celebrations. Quit boring the game up with these new kickoff rules and celebration penalties!!!

  24. The best celebration to watch is when a player scores a TD and proceeds to dunk the ball…but gets REJECTED!

    Releated search- Vernon Davis 2012

  25. Nfl just does not like the Saints. How many bs rule can they make cuz the Saints do something.

    First cuz they beat farve they change ot rules!

    Then bountygate. When it was just a dog and pony show for a law suite. Never mind that the Seahawks dbs ran the reverse of the same thing last season. Fines for not making plays is the same as rewards for making them!

    Now Gonzales is retired graham can’t dunk any more?

    Hey nfl why don’t you just work on the rules you all ready have on the books? Like pass interference and call it for crying out loud!

    Here is an amazing fact out of 18 games last season jimmy graham never had a pi call on anyone defending him! Really

  26. The NFL Management has wayyy too much time on their hands if they consider this an issue………..keep up the good work ruining the game fellas…..

  27. I’ve seen this happen twice in Atlanta, but can’t recall the last time it happened anywhere else. Maybe banning terrible equipment is the way to go.

  28. The NFL……making exceptions for the Packers for decades. Every team must have one owner……..except Green Bay, no team can fundraise fro. their fans for stadium improvements…….except Green Bay, no organized or planned end zone celebrations……..except or the Lambeau Leap. What a farce, level playing field my a$$.

  29. It seems they’re only a year or two away from banning field goals, so why not just wait until the goal posts are gone altogether?

  30. I’m in favor of the ban because most of these NFL guys aren’t really dunking anything anyway. They throw the football over the bar then slap the cross bar with their hand.

    Hardly a dunk and it can lead to a game delay.

    This form of celebration has been played and filleted, move on!

  31. Makes sense, yes another rule. But, when a player imitates an NBA player hanging on the rim, with its inherent risk of backboard breakage, having to delay the game to realign the goal post is unacceptable. If the player dunks the ball without pushing it out of alignment then no discussion and no rule. Thanks Jimmy for another rule.

  32. What`s another rule change? The game that was football 50 years ago is now totally unrecognizable.

  33. If they want to ban/penalize anything it should be the “I just made a routine tackle” dance.

  34. Of all the stupid rule changes this is the best one! Basketball is the lamest of all pro sports by far. You want to dunk go the NBA, where the game is completely rigged and egos are bigger than the teams. The NBA should be required to announce this is not a real game but entertainment just like WWE.

  35. The goal post dunk should be banned for being played out. I have nothing against the idea of spontaneous celebrations, but I’m so sick of the silly contrived stuff, which Graham’s goalpost dunk is.

  36. As Mike Ditka said years ago when he was coach of the Bears “act like you have been in the in-zone before. Walter Payton would just hand the ball to the Ref. Of course everyone knew hot good he was he did not have to draw attention by doing those stupid dances.

  37. This is crazy. I used to love Bruce Smith’s celebrations, Mark Gastineau’s sack dance, etc. None of it exists anymore and why? Because it’s not being a good sport? Evidently the folks making the rules have never been on a field at any level.

    Let them jump, scream and go hog-wild: they’re playing a game.

  38. Now, this one thing they *should* do away with (Unlike most of the things the league talks about eliminating). Goal line dunks are stupid and sometimes give the goal post a subtle lilt the rest of the game if enough force is applied. I’ve behind a goal post and I’ve seen it, even though it doesn’t really come across on TV.

    I find these celebrations a bit obnoxious. I understand that you throw a touchdown pass and might pump your fist and say “Hell yeah” and run up and pat your receiver on the back, and the receiver may catch the ball and smile or high five a team mate or whatever, and that’s fine. But I’ve never liked these choreographed dance routines and stuff, it just seems way overboard, and kind of a cross between taunting (the other team and fans of the other team) and some sort of self-promotion where the guy practices his dancing during the week and wants his dance to make highlight shows and the dance becomes almost as interesting to him as helping his team win. And the goal post slam dunk can actually, as the article notes, mean a delay in the game because it can cause damage to the goal post- or a non-delay that makes things a little off for the kickers.

    15 yards. And because this is something that not is easy for the refs to get wrong because is no hazy borderline where it becomes a judgement call as to whether something qualifies or doesn’t qualify, and clearly has to be something a player intentionally sets out to do and gives some thought to (You can’t accidentally dunk a football over a goal post, and there is no ‘almost’ doing it where you thought you were within the rules like there sometimes be a hazy borderline in other excessive celebration calls), I’d make those 15 yards count. Don’t just assess them on the extra point or the kickoff- let the other team choose between assessing the penalty on the extra point (Which the kicker would probably make anymore), on the kick off (Where so many kicks result in touchbacks anyway), or between the end of the kick return and first down. That last option would really make it mean something.

  39. I’m all for celebrations but ban this one…if steve smith gets a penalty for jumping up on the goal post and sliding down it I don’t see how thats different.

    Also, how big of a fine would a defensive player get if he attempted to block one of these dunks?

    I’ve been saying this for years if I played D in the NFL and they tried this c rap on my home field…I’d go for the stuff and wouldn’t be worried about getting a flagrant or technical foul…

  40. We’ll, aren’t they crying that field goals are too easy. Let them dunk…if it’s crooked, it stays that way.

  41. Good because it looks ridiculous whenever somebody does it. Maybe if it was only one guy that did it. It would be okay. But a lot of players do it. Think of something original already.

  42. jason9696 says:
    Mar 22, 2014 6:04 PM
    Good because it looks ridiculous whenever somebody does it. Maybe if it was only one guy that did it. It would be okay. But a lot of players do it. Think of something original already.
    ====================================

    Every time a player comes up with something original the league fines them for it and makes it a 15 yard penalty. I’m surprised they haven’t banned the high five yet.

  43. I like the idea of wiping out the extra point or giving the ball to the other team at the 35 to start their next drive. That would be the immediate end of it. Not one player would risk the point and/or 15 yards. I don’t mind a stupid little dance, but when you’re doing something that can impact future play (i.e. – a goalpost being out of alignment and refs not catching it) or delaying game by 5-10 mins (the games are already waaaaay too long because of all the stupid commercial breaks) then you should pay a hefty price.

    That is the biggest reason I’m all for elimination of the extra-point. Its one less commercial break every time. They go to commercial, kick a gimme field goal, then go to commercial, then kick off, then go to commercial. Its ridiculous.

  44. Ban it because it’s old, corny, and stupid – not just because of one repair incident.

    Anyone who actually misses it or feels the game is less enjoyable is likely an idiot.

  45. @ coachglove. Your last paragraph is bang on. I’ve gotten to the point where I’m PVRing the games and sitting down an hour after kickoff just to fast forward through all that crap. Ridiculous

  46. Omg this nfl is a joke

    I wish the player’s took a stand together
    And not tackled any1 just tag them I bet u the nfl would panic then and tv money would suffer so fast

    Nfl players where are u at stand up on football game u played as a kid and loved

    If the nfl can sign off on this stuff in madden

  47. They messing everything up man.. Thinking bout eliminating field goals.. moving kickoffs to the 40 soo guys won’t even have a chance to return kickoffs and taking with it kickoff returns. then what’s the point of special teams ?

  48. The problem with another rule that imposes a penalty if the posts need to be fixed is who gets to say if they need to be checked, and who’s to say if they were perfect beforehand. This then leads to a hole bunch of other issues. Allow the dunks for now (maybe except ban in playoffs), and ban it only if it becomes a real problem. In the meantime, reinforce the damn things.

  49. Seems like so many fans find celebrating like this stupid. These fans need to keep in mind, your opinion is NOT a reflection of every fan. Many fans love the antics and the celebrations. This isn’t the gentleman’s sport of Baseball and these players want to emote when their adrenaline is running full throttle. Another thing to keep in mind is that the celebration typically isn’t for YOU. It’s for the guy who just made the huge play. They’re proud and their ego is soaring. Let them have their damn moment.

  50. And ban the Lambeau Leap while you’re at it. There is no reason players should be going into the stands during the game. It would have never been exempted if it wasn’t a Green Bay thing

  51. to all of you posting against Goodell, quit showing your ignorance. Roger works for the owners, they and the coaches are the ones making this change.

  52. It is, was, and always will be- poor sportsmanship. Dancing, flipping and prancing into the endzone? Poor sportsmanship. Signalling a 1st down? Poor sportsmanship. Making any kind of celebratory “move”, after any positive endeavor? Poor sportsmanship.

  53. How about an electrified goal post? It might solve the problem or could be very entertaining.

  54. Can their billions of dollars not make the goalpost stronger?

    I mean, NBA rims are hung on all the time. Why not make it stronger and stop sapping the fun?

  55. My Vision By Roger Goodell
    -No Kickoff (players that are return specialists are now only able to carry the medical equipment for the team doctors)
    -No extra point (in fact no points at all)
    -Absolutely no celebration this includes Dunks, high fives, cheering, and the lambeau leap.
    -All players will wear a large clear rubber ball (like the one that bubble boy wears)
    -all players will undergo extreme sensitivity training
    -there will be no win/loss records recorded (everyone is now a winner)
    -every player will be awarded a participation medal at the end of every season

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