Sep 22, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Golden Tate (81) during the national anthem prior to the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at CenturyLink Field. Seattle defeated Jacksonville 45-17. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

NFL’s ‘Golden Rule’ makes sense, should happen


The NFL has a lot of rules in regards to celebrating that make no sense and they earn the No Fun League title.  The outlawing of team celebrations is the most bizarre, backward rule ever since the idea is to celebrate as a team rather than individuals.  The ‘greatest show on turf’s’ celebrations that involved their offensive linemen were great.  The fun bunch was just that; fun.  The ‘Golden Rule’ that could be adopted in honor of Golden Tate’s unbelievably over-the-top, stupid, and even risky celebration makes sense and Tate made it unavoidable.

After catching a pass against the St. Louis Rams, an NFL power house that demands taunting, Golden Tate ran down the sideline waving and mimicking Rams players talking as he ran down the sideline for about 50 yards before getting into the end zone.  Tate’s celebration was so stupid that it almost caused him to run himself out of bounds so he could show up his opponent in what would have been poetic justice.  Had any member of the Rams defense laid Tate out in the end zone, it would have been impossible to blame them, which is where the risk comes in to this situation.

The NFL is considering a rule that would negate a touchdown in these circumstances, which is similar to a college rule that already exists.  This rule makes sense for the NFL, but it has to be cut and dry.  It needs to be an obvious situation like this one with Tate to draw the flag.  The important thing is the message that Tate sent from the 7-1 Seahawks to the now 3-5 Rams.  It will not be surprising when Tate gets annihilated at the first opportunity the next time he plays a game against the Rams or really anyone else.

There are a lot of celebration rules that need to die.  This is finally a rule that makes sense and hopefully eliminates this type of nonsense from the NFL.  Whether people are fans of the Seahawks or Tate himself, that particular play was indefensible.  Had he just ran the ball into the end zone and then done something, more power to him.  The end zone should afford him that opportunity.  In that framework, the potential for sending a message seems fair if not appropriate.  Do something.  Send a message.  Running down the field while looking like a jackass?  The NFL is better than that or at least they should be.

Tags: Golden Tate NFL Seattle Seahawks St. Louis Rams

  • Ron Grummer

    The current taunting rule is unnecessary and ridiculous, enhancing such a rule would only enhance the farcical referee comedy of errors already being experienced this season. These are grown men, the interplay of celebration is an integral part of the fun of professional football. If a grown man feels shame because he didn’t perform his job adequately and an opponent who took advantage of his error points that out,…that is a part of the game. If the player who feels bad cannot channel his emotions into motivation to play better, and reacts with personal violence towards the player who noted and called attention to his failure (the essence of “taunting”) then the player lacking that ability to handle his own failure should be punished, not the player who calls attention to the failure. “Taunting” is too subjective to give the zebras another opportunity to screw up calls. Too many teams this year are playing more against the prejudices of referees rather than the opposing teams as it is. This season, the regular refs are worse than the substitute refs of last year. giving more chances to screw up and insert their personal biases into this sport will drive fans and revenues away not enhance the game.

  • Jonathan Heath

    So the official will then have the power to make a judgment about what is sufficiently taunting to warrant negating a score that could affect the outcome of the game? We want officials making those kinds of decisions? Not to defend Tate, but is this really so disturbing that the other team should forfeit a game, essentially?

  • Hawkman54

    That is the stupidest thing I have ever heard – Don’t like in college and would hate it and start a write in campaign if put in the pro’s – The 15 yard penalty is more than enough ! What about all the stupid stuff by Ochocinco ( sp?) and TO over the years and I never heard anything about this – Just BS !!!!!