Mike Tomlin: Taunting needed to be addressed

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How did taunting become a point of emphasis? NFL coaches wanted it.

The coaches subcommittee, which is made up of Andy Reid, Brian Flores, John Harbaugh, Sean McDermott, Sean McVay, Kyle Shanahan, Kevin Stefanski and Mike Zimmer, recommended the move to the Competition Committee. The Competition Committee, which has coaches Frank Reich, Ron Rivera, Mike Tomlin and Mike Vrabel as members, approved it.

Officials now are enforcing it. They have thrown 11 flags for taunting in two weeks, the same number of taunting fouls called in the entire 2020 season.

Tomlin expects it to lead to an end to taunting.

“All of us, to a man, acknowledged that this is something that needed to be addressed,” Tomlin said. “That’s why it’s a point of emphasis. That’s why none of us are surprised at the number of calls in terms of them being increased. The players will adjust; they always do. They better adjust quickly, specifically speaking of mine.”

Bucs safety Antoine Winfield Jr.‘s taunting foul, when he flashed the peace sign at Tyreek Hill in the Super Bowl, could have served as the impetus for the point of emphasis. But officials didn’t penalize the Chiefs receiver — and the NFL didn’t fine him — for doing the same thing to Winfield in a Week 12 game last season.

So now officials — at the behest of the coaches — are calling anything that looks like taunting.

Rivera said Tuesday the purpose of the point of emphasis is to prevent small things from becoming big issues.

16 responses to “Mike Tomlin: Taunting needed to be addressed

  1. Keep that stuff out of the big leagues. Maybe the CFL, the XFL, or the AAF. Throw the hanky. Move em back 15 yards. Throw em out of the game. Don’t need it. Don’t like it. I want winners!

  2. Look the calls are going to be subjective but there really is no reason for taunting at any level in sports. Let YOUR play and the scoreboard do the talking for you.

    I’m all for celebrating success but taunting is for children and bad sports. Half those same guys who taunt will whine next week about ‘not being respected’. You want “respect” earn it. True champions let their accomplishments speak for themselves.

  3. It’s part of the game. Taunting is a way of letting off steam rather than commit a dirty play that could injure. Hockey allows fights so nobody is swinging their sticks at someone’s head. If you can celebrate in the end zone, why not tease someone out in field. And sometimes it’s entertaining. Isn’t that the point?

  4. How about fining the players instead of penalizing them so the fans don’t have to pay the price by watching a worse product where the outcome of the game is decided by flags instead of football.

  5. You get paid millions of dollars to play a sport that changes your lives in ways that 99.9% of people only dream of. If they want you to stop taunting, just do it. It’s not going to make the game more or less entertaining.

  6. Good! I hate taunting or anything wasting time away from playing ball. Get back in the huddle and play ball.

  7. “Andy Reid, Brian Flores, John Harbaugh, Sean McDermott, Sean McVay, Kyle Shanahan, Kevin Stefanski, Mike Zimmer, Frank Reich, Ron Rivera, Mike Tomlin and Mike Vrabel”

    There are some heavy hitters on that list. If it’s coming from them, I’m cool with it.

  8. Every year Tomlin has to address things like this. Different player, different season, same issues. Captain Catch Phrase is unable to instill discipline in his teams.

  9. mikefloreo says:
    September 21, 2021 at 11:03 pm
    You get paid millions of dollars to play a sport that changes your lives in ways that 99.9% of people only dream of. If they want you to stop taunting, just do it. It’s not going to make the game more or less entertaining.

    *******************************

    The taunting definitely affects the entertainment level when penalties are thrown. They slow the game and are boring.

  10. For every taunting penalty there are two equal and opposite reactions. One fan base is thrilled it was called and the other thinks it is a travesty. And they will flip sides in an instant depending if their team is being held accountable. I have often wondered when they are going to start throwing flags on the end-zone gatherings after turnovers. It is not like this was a surprise! All the teams got fair warning to change their behavior. So if you don’t want a taunting penalty to hurt your team, don’t try to push the envelope and save your emotions for when you get back to your own sideline.

  11. Ever since Antonio Brown started holding the ball out after a catch and then dropping it to the ground (he may not have been first but he is the first Steeler I remember doing it) I have cringed every time a player does that. One of these days it will be flagged, and I’m OK with that. In the words of several great coaches, “Act like you’ve been there before!”

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