NFL Notes: Blandino Says Celebration Penalty Relaxations Made With Millennials In Mind
Fox NFL rules official Dean Blandino, formerly NFL Senior VP/Officiating, said that the league "wants to make sure it’s not too stuffy for millennials." Blandino said of relaxing celebration penalties, "That part of it is trying to reach the millennial and this new age of fans and having more fun. And there was a committee, I was part of that committee with different people at the league office in looking at our game, looking at in-game downtime, looking at how our fans watch the game, looking at eye-tracking technology and where their eyes are going" (PROFOOTBALLTALK.com, 6/18).
TANK WARS: THE RINGER's Kevin Clark NFL teams tanking is "very real." Even if players are "still trying their best on every play, front offices have worked around it by making sure those players aren’t good enough to win games." The Browns "did it last year, the Bucs did it" in '14, and the Jets are "doing things that look and smell like a tank, including the tankiest move of all: denying a tank." If tanking is "here to stay -- and it’s looking ever more likely that it is -- the trend could have a devastating impact on the league’s 16-game schedule and four-team divisional structure" (THERINGER.com, 6/16).
MAKING PROGRESS: THE MMQB'S Peter King notes NFL teams currently have a record "15 minorities either coaching the team or running the personnel side." Fritz Pollard Alliance Chair John Wooten said it is "gratifying" and shows "how far we’ve come as a league." (MMQB.SI.com, 6/19).