The NFL seems to be having trouble deciding what is and isn't an acceptable celebration during the season's first four weeks. So, to try and help clarify, NFL senior vice president of officiating Dean Blandino presented a video to the media about the subject Thursday. According to Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio, the following were deemed to be acceptable: Non sexually-suggestive dancing, celebrations with teammates that aren't choreographed, spiking/spinning the ball, bowing toward the crowd, saluting, the "Lambeau Leap," going to the ground to pray—oh, and also just handing the freakin' ball to the refs.
That being said, the following were also deemed not acceptable: depicting violence (shooting guns, arrows, slashing your throat, etc.), sexually-suggestive dancing, choreographed celebrations, over-the-top celebrations, drawn out celebrations that go on way too long, spiking/spinning the ball towards an opponent, going to the ground (and not praying), or using anything as a prop (including the ball).
In addition to these otherwise ridiculous explanations that no man in a suit should ever have to make clear, Blandino went on to further explain that when it comes to sexually suggestive dancing, saying, "If it looks like it, it probably is," which would seem to include pumping the air.
Earlier in this fairly young season, we've seen a couple of fines levied against Steelers WR Antonio Brown for twerking. In fact, this past week, Brown got hit with a $24,000+ fee for just that. He later appealed the fine, saying, "I don't think excessive celebrating should cost more than hitting guys in the helmet." And, well, that's actually a pretty good point. He also openly wondered how many "pumps" he can get away with, saying, "I tried to minimize with two [pumps]—still there was a fine."
Anyway, Blandino's explanation should help to partially clear up that no amount of pumps are allowable. He also explained the league's rationale on excessive celebrating in general, saying, "Believe me, if we let this go it will continue to grow and certain players will continue to try to outdo each other, and then it leads to other things. Players stomping on logos, and players hitting those players stomping on logos."
It's up to you whether or not you buy that explanation. Though there's probably a better chance that you will if you were watching football back in 2000: