While some will say the NFL stands for the “No Fun League” instead of the National Football League, flipping anyone the middle finger while the cameras are rolling is certainly out of bounds.
So, it should be no surprise to hear that a pair of players who were caught flipping the middle finger in different incidents were fined today by the NFL.
Burfict was fined $12,154 for the incident by the league office, and he should be lucky it was just that given his history of violent conduct on the field. Let’s just say Burfict isn’t exactly one to hold his emotions in check (and we’re being kind on that description).
The next fine handed down was to Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin. He was caught flipping off offensive coordinator Darrell Bevel as he called the wide receiver pass to Russell Wilson. According to Baldwin, it was all a joke because he is supposed to be catching those passes, not throwing them.
“It’s more funny than it is anything,” Baldwin said. “[Bevell] knows that when we get in the red zone, I want the ball thrown to me. I want to score touchdowns. And so it’s like in that situation, him flipping the bird to me because now he’s got me throwing the ball to somebody else.”
He was fined the same $12,154 as Burfict, clearly a move that is indicative of a uniform penalty assessed under the Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Maybe it was funny to him, but it likely wasn’t funny to the parents who had to explain that to their kids at home or in the stands. After all, the NFL is supposed to be a family friendly environment (if you can afford to attend with said family these days).
With the NFL clearly aware of its image problem given its handling (or lack there of) of recent domestic abuse incidents and myriad of arrests, you can bet the NFL is going to crack down on offensive behavior and abusive behavior towards fans and coaches.
Sorry, Mr’s. Baldwin and Burfict, the joke is coming out of your paychecks…not like you’ll miss that 12-grand or anything.