The NFL announced last week that it would be cracking down on taunting during games. But one application of the new enforcement rules has the NFL world absolutely fuming.
During today’s game between the Carolina Panthers and Indianapolis Colts, Colts running Benny LeMay broke off an impressive 14-yard run, dragging several Panthers defenders with him. But as he got up from his run, he flexed his arms a bit in front of a Panthers defender. That didn’t sit well with the referee.
LeMay was immediately flagged and given a 15-yard penalty for taunting. And just as quickly, the NFL world responded in outrage.
Some are being a little tempered with their frustration, simply calling it “ridiculous.” Others are calling the NFL the “No Fun League” in response.
This is what the league considers a penalty of “Taunting”.
Absolutely ridiculous. pic.twitter.com/GyrOdfuPqU
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) August 15, 2021
If they call this a taunting penalty during a regular season game im turning off the TV pic.twitter.com/ZlrOf4N1cR
— JzoSports (@JzoSports) August 15, 2021
NFL new taunting penalty is already the worst
— Will Schroder (@willschroder5) August 15, 2021
No Fun League strikes again with a taunting penalty against fourth-string RB Benny LeMay, who had the audacity to be excited about his 14-yard run. #Colts
— George Bremer (@gmbremer) August 15, 2021
This kind of reaction to that flag was probably predictable. There were similar reactions when the NFL announced its taunting crackdown just a few days ago.
Some have pointed out that LeMay wouldn’t have received that penalty if he had done exactly what he did while facing away from his opponent. But it can be hard to avoid getting caught up in the moment, especially after a big play.
No doubt this controversy will rear its ugly head in the regular season. And it’ll happen in a huge moment that swings a game – possibly a season.
Hopefully it doesn’t happen too often, of this season could get nasty.