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New York Giants co-owner John Mara explained to reporters on Tuesday why the NFL has decided to become stricter about penalizing taunting among players heading into the 2021 season. 

“That’s something we discuss every year in the Competition Committee. We get kind of sick and tired of the talking that does go on from time to time on the field,” Mara, member of the NFL’s Competition Committee, said. “We tried to balance the sportsmanship with allowing the players to have fun and there’s always a fine line there, but none of us like to see that.”

“It’s just a question of whether you can have rules that can be enforced and without taking the fun out of the game too, but nobody wants to see a player taunting another player,” he continued. “I know, I certainly don’t. I think the rest of the members of the Competition Committee feel the same way, too.”  

NFL fans widely ridiculed the league for living up to its long-standing “No Fun League” moniker following the announcement of its harsh crackdown on taunting. A player flagged twice in a game for taunting could be automatically ejected, and later face a fine and possible suspension, depending on the severity of their actions. We got a glimpse of what’s to come over the weekend with a penalty that was called on Indianapolis Colts running back Benny LeMay for some seemingly harmless banter. 

Mara’s remarks earlier today riled up NFL fans and players alike, and here’s how they responded on Twitter: