Flake Sports Exclusive: NFL Considering New Rules For The 2018 Season
Due to unrelenting pressure from the White House, decreased television viewership, and slumping ticket sales, the NFL has decided to implement some new rules for the 2018 NFL season. Despite the controversial nature of these new rules, the NFL is certain they will help create a surge in ticket sales and receive the full support of football fans and the Trump administration.
All new rules are designed to prevent any disrespect to the American flag and the soldiers that fought to defend it. I sat down with a senior NFL executive to go over these changes in more detail and discuss how they would impact the games themselves.
The first group of changes involve play on the field; the NFL is banning all plays that require any player "taking a knee," such as the quarterback kneel and field goal kick. The senior NFL executive explained there's always a chance that someone in the stands is either singing or humming the national anthem and that it would be disrespectful for any players to kneel during the song. The quarterback kneel will be removed completely and NFL teams will no longer be able to run the clock without running some kind of play. The executive explained that, "running the clock is for terrorists who hate America and the NFL is a patriotic organization!"
The exec went on to explain that instead of a field goal kick for three points or an extra point kick following a touchdown, players will now have to do a "punt-style" kick for both. These changes remove the quarterback from the play, who would traditionally be in a kneeling position to set the ball up for a kick. Any play featuring a kneeling player will be flagged and the offending team is penalized 20 yards.
The second set of changes are designed to prevent disrespect to the flag on the sidelines and in the stadium seating areas. Any players kneeling on the sidelines, for whatever reason, will be immediately ejected from the game; players are instead encouraged to stand, sit on a bench, or sit "Indian-style" on the floor. As I tried to explain to the executive that the term "Indian-style" is offensive to Native Americans, he interrupted me by saying, "Not as offensive as football players using the 1st Amendment to wipe their butts with the American flag!! That's not happening on my watch!!"
Another rule under this category is the one that bans any fans from proposing or praying in the stands during a football game. The NFL explained that "Sally" can wait until after the game for her proposal and fans should save their kneeling for when they're in church.
I couldn't believe what I was hearing; I finished up the interview by asking why it's okay to limit free speech under pressure from the president of the United States, and how this isn't an encroachment on our 1st Amendment rights? The executive said, "The 1st Amendment is for Patriots! The president made it clear that players who kneel maybe shouldn't be in this country anymore. To me, that's because not honoring the flag is un-American and so if you disrespect the flag, you're not truly a citizen of the US; and if you're not a citizen, then the 1st Amendment doesn't really apply to you. You saw it in recent polls, Americans don't care about free speech when it comes to liberals, minorities and foreigners. Most NFL fans don't want to players to be able to kneel, they just want them to shut up and play football!"