Kendrick Bourne avoids taunting fine for quick flash of peace sign at Buster Skrine

Tennessee Titans v New England Patriots
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The NFL is aggressively emphasizing the prohibition on taunting this year. Except when it isn’t.

On Sunday against the Titans, Patriots receiver Kendrick Bourne capped an impressive 41-yard catch and run for a touchdown by flashing a peace sign at cornerback Buster Skrine just before entering the end zone. The officials didn’t see it. If they did, they didn’t flag it.

The league office, which surely saw it, didn’t fine Bourne for the gesture.

And so the entire taunting thing becomes even more confusing and inconsistent. Several weeks ago, Bears linebacker Cassius Marsh received both a flag and a five-figure fine for impermissible posturing at the opposing sideline. Bourne, who clearly (albeit temporarily) did what the league wants players to not do was neither flagged nor fined.

The rule is bad. The inconsistent application of it is worse. Although the smartest approach continues to be, as Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy said this week, to just do nothing at all other than give the ball to the closest official, the supposedly black-and-white, know-it-when-you-see-it prohibition includes a gray era that results in outcomes that can’t be reconciled.

11 responses to “Kendrick Bourne avoids taunting fine for quick flash of peace sign at Buster Skrine

  1. Honestly I never noticed either, nor even knew before now. And thats after watching the game plus a replay. Someone was really looking closely to find this.

  2. Since when has a peace sign been considered an aggressive action such as taunting. It is a “peace” sign. Its intent is in its very name.

  3. I thought it was 2 fingers for 2 TDs but either way bad form and I’m sure Belichick made it clear to him not to do things like that as it will get called if he keeps it up and hurt the team

  4. Sad that we even have to talk about this. Let them taunt all they want. It adds entertainment value.

  5. Wrong interpretation

    He was celebrating his 2nd touchdown with David Andrews who can clearly be seen with his arms raised, directly in KBs line of sight.

    Shrine had nothing to do with it.

  6. Stop it… just stop it. It wasn’t a peace sign (but if it was who cares)… he was signaling his second touchdown of the game… clearly NOT taunting. Taunting is like pornography… “I know it when I see it”…

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