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Taunting to remain a dead-ball foul

Tate Getty Images

Last year, the taunting rule was flagged for offseason consideration.  For taunts happening during a play, the league pondered the possibility of changing the foul from its current status as a dead-ball infraction.

After Seahawks (now Lions) receiver Golden Tate drew a flag for an extended in-play taunt of Rams safety Rodney McLeod, NFL V.P. of officiating Dean Blandino explained that an adjustment to the enforcement could be made in the offseason.

“A lot of people felt that the touchdown shouldn’t have counted [but] a taunting foul is always treated as a dead-ball foul, meaning whatever happened during the play counts, and the foul is enforced on the next play, which would be the kickoff,” Blandino said at the time on NFL Network.  “In college, this action would take back the touchdown.  Tate started taunting at the 25-yard line.  The college rule, that’s enforced at the spot of the foul, so they’d go from a touchdown to first-and-10 at the 40, which would be a gigantic penalty.  The NFL rule, it’s a dead-ball foul, it’s enforced on the kickoff.  But I’m sure that’s something that the Competition Committee will look at in the offseason.”

Per a league source, the Competition Committee did indeed consider the situation in the offseason.  But the Competition Committee decided not to change the enforcement of the taunting penalty.

And so for a play like Tate’s, the kickoff will continue to be moved from the 35 to the 20.The source says there’s no plan to revisit the issue in May, even though taunting has become a point of emphasis for 2014.

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17 Responses to “Taunting to remain a dead-ball foul”
  1. offthelows says: Apr 27, 2014 7:43 PM

    That’s a part of Golden’s game I don’t mind him taking to Detroit… Rams did exact some revenge in week 17, though in a loss, roughing him up pretty good every time he touched the ball.

  2. captainwisdom8888 says: Apr 27, 2014 8:08 PM

    In my perspective, the ONLY thing that taunting accomplishes is that it confirms the person doing the taunting is NOT a high character guy whatsoever. He may think he’s actually showing up his opponent, but in reality he’s just showing how childish he really is.

    I do honestly feel that a lot of NFL players periodically lose sight of who exactly they are representing when they do what they do, whether it be on or off the field. You are constantly representing yourself of course, but your actions reflect upon your organization, your teammates, your friends, and especially your family. How proud do you think your family back home is watching TV and seeing you acting like a complete fool in front of millions of people?

  3. copiouscaffeine says: Apr 27, 2014 8:44 PM

    Its really hard for me to understand why a guy like Tate would leave a trail of frustrated opponents that are just waiting for the opportunity to make him pay for his show of disrespect. Good luck in Detroit, Golden.

  4. primenumber19 says: Apr 27, 2014 10:10 PM

    the nfl over legislates against players expressing themselves bad or good

  5. thetigerleg says: Apr 27, 2014 10:56 PM

    If the taunt is during the play, it should be 15 from the spot of the taunt, replay the down. If it’s after the play, like tossing the ball at an opponent, it’s a dead ball 15, run the next play.

  6. ilovefoolsball says: Apr 28, 2014 1:29 AM

    The owners don’t want anyone taking away their touchdowns. Even if they benefit from it now and then.

  7. sw19womble says: Apr 28, 2014 1:30 AM

    No Fun League

  8. yeevie13 says: Apr 28, 2014 2:27 AM

    Penalizing a taunt from the spot of the taunt would be a monumentally stupid idea.

    So no doubt Goodell will be putting that in for 2015

  9. cylondetector says: Apr 28, 2014 4:57 AM

    Surprising outcome, considering that it makes the ensuing kick-off a play where something exciting or dangerous might actually happen.

  10. cylondetector says: Apr 28, 2014 5:25 AM

    Surprising outcome, considering that it makes the ensuing kick-off a play where something exciting or dangerous might actually happen..

  11. VondyP says: Apr 28, 2014 6:05 AM

    call back a touchdown for a taunt? puh-leeze. that is absurd. games get intense and players get heated up and like to talk smack, personally I enjoy it because it increases the drive of the players during the game, resulting in a more enjoyable game overall. whoever is doing the taunting will likely pay for it in the boosted play of their opponents on the following drive. don’t take touchdowns away for stuff like this…. the league is already banning big hits and certain TD celebrations…

  12. FinFan68 says: Apr 28, 2014 6:20 AM

    College has this one right.

  13. dmtshooter says: Apr 28, 2014 9:18 AM

    Tate should have to pay out against a class action lawsuit for every person who was offended by his action. Either that, or prison time. Taunting is just that serious of a problem.

  14. pleazenufalready says: Apr 28, 2014 10:31 AM

    Funny how the players that taunt are usually the first ones to bitch about not getting “respect”

  15. bornahawker says: Apr 28, 2014 11:28 AM

    That is why Tate became expendable. He is a me guy with role play type of skill. Very happy Hawks did not pay him and waste cap space on that attitude. Go Hawks!

  16. jusford says: Apr 28, 2014 1:08 PM

    College players don’t get fined. Leave the rule as it is.

  17. jdgalt says: Apr 28, 2014 10:14 PM

    Taunting is simply part of the game and should be tolerated, period. The people who can’t take it (and I include officialdom) are the ones being babies.

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