NFL Players Can Now Be Penalized for Talking to Refs Without Mask
Ahead of the weekend of NFL Week 5, teams were informed that anyone who approaches an official without a face covering can now receive a 15-yard penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct.
These individuals can also be subject to fines, suspensions and possible forfeiture of draft picks.
Fewell's memo references multiple head coaches removing masks and says game officials have been reminded "if an individual not wearing a face covering approaches them inappropriately, they have the authority to take administrative or officiating action," including penalties.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) October 9, 2020
Outkick reports that there is a memo going around NFL media saying that “if an individual not wearing a face covering approaches [game officials] inappropriately, they have the authority to take administrative or officiating action.”
The league has already fined numerous coaches for mask violations, such as Raiders coach Jon Gruden and Broncos coach Vic Fangio. The fines haven’t seemed to help much for the first four weeks of the season, as even just last Monday night, Patriots coach Bill Belichick took off both of his masks to yell at the refs.
Bill Belichick loses his mind, also ditches the double mask after the refs rule that Patrick Mahomes didn't fumble. pic.twitter.com/6w5P75g75x
— The Comeback (@thecomeback) October 6, 2020
It will be interesting to watch if these coaches continue to violate coronavirus rules with these new penalties.