Wednesday, August 6, 2008

NFL Code of Conduct Policy Could Prove Costly to Fans

By David Halpren - In case you were too caught up in this whole Brett Favre circus, the NFL decided to choose yesterday as its day to drop a bombshell on the season ticket holders of all 32 NFL teams. In the process, it rekindled thoughts about the NFL standing for No Fun League.

In a release by the NFL, they have extended their "code of conduct" to the fans.

No longer will a fan be able to curse, taunt an opposing fan, appear drunk, or be unruly at a game. If you are in violation of any of these things you could be subjected to losing your season tickets without refund. You will also never be allowed to purchase tickets ever again.

And these rules even extend to the parking lots and tailgating.

Another hard-line stance is that even if a guest or some random person is occupying your seats, the season ticket holder will be held accountable.

I don't know how the NFL is going to enforce that, but fans will definitely see more security in the parking lots as well as in the stadiums.

As a passionate Eagles fan, season ticket holder, and tailgater, I am very disturbed by this latest policy. While the Philadelphia Eagles already have their own policies in place that could lead to season ticket revocation, this latest news is too over-the-top.

I understand that the NFL wants to create an environment that is friendly and safe. I understand that women and children shouldn't be scared to enter a stadium. And I totally respect the fact that an opposing fan should be allowed to cheer for his or her team at a road game without being harassed.

However, let's keep things in perspective.

Not being able to use "foul language" is almost a violation of my rights. I say almost because obviously I'm in their stadium, so I have to abide by their rules, but come on!

There are eight regular season home games each year. Each game is an event. You tailgate with friends, you get pumped up for the game and you are passionate. Cursing is second nature.

Are you telling me if the Eagles run a five-yard out pattern on 3rd-and-12 I'm supposed to sit on my hands? Hell no. I'm going to tell Andy Reid to go %$&@ himself. Not because I'm mean, but because I'm into the game and I'm expressing myself.

If the Eagles are playing the Cowboys and I have a guy sitting behind me wearing a Dallas TO jersey and he's cheering like crazy for his team, do you think I'm going to keep my mouth shut when the Eagles score? No. I'm going turn around and rub it in.

Do I have to be mean about it? Certainly not, but what does the NFL considering "taunting?"

These new rules are very subjective and I hate the fact that some stadium security guard has the right to pick me out of a crowd and get my tickets revoked because I said "@#%hole" as some moron wearing an Eli Manning jersey walked up the steps.

I have an idea; how about they just play the games in the stadium with no fans and we'll all watch the games in our own houses while we sip tea?

National Football League...no, it's definitely No Fun League.

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