Beer CHICAGO, IL – OCTOBER 19: Beer cans sit in the visiting clubhouse before the post-game celebration after the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Chicago Cubs 11-1 in game five of the National League Championship Series at Wrigley Field on October 19, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. The Dodgers advance to the 2017 World Series. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

The NFL sent a stern message to teams Friday, threatening “significant discipline” for violations of the league’s alcohol policy.

The league’s guidelines prohibit alcohol at team facilities, as well as while traveling on team planes and buses. That policy has been seemingly flaunted by several high-profile cases, most recently early Friday morning, when Tennessee Titans offensive coordinator Todd Downing was charged with driving under the influence hours after the Titans defeated the Green Bay Packers on Thursday Night Football.

And earlier this month, former Kansas City Chiefs assistant coach Britt Reid was sentenced to three years in prison for an alcohol-related crash last year that left a young girl seriously injured. Court documents showed Reid, the son of coach Andy Reid, had been drinking at a team facility.

The NFL statement reiterated the league’s policy, noting that violations “will be taken seriously and will result in significant discipline.”

“In light of recent events, clubs are reminded that league policy prohibits alcoholic beverages, including beer, in the locker rooms, practice or office facilities, or while traveling on team buses or planes at any time during the preseason, regular season or postseason. This applies to all players, coaches, club personnel, and guests traveling with your team,” the league statement read (via the NFL Network).

“This policy has been in place for many years. Making alcohol available at club facilities or while traveling creates significant and unnecessary risks to the league, its players, coaches and others. Violations of this important policy will be taken seriously and will result in significant discipline.”

The league’s statement also came just three days after Washington Commanders quarterback Taylor Heinicke went viral for a video showing him drinking beer on the team plane. The NFL Network reported the Commanders disciplined several players for drinking on the flight, and the league said that discipline was sufficient.


NFL fans on Twitter seemed generally opposed to the crackdown, saying that responsible drinking should be allowed.

[Tom Pelissero, NFL Network]

About Arthur Weinstein

Arthur spends his free time traveling around the U.S. to sporting events, state and national parks, and in search of great restaurants off the beaten path.