The NFL has significantly cracked down on celebrations since Roger Goodell took over as commissioner in 2006.
Because of that, many have joked the letters NFL stand for No Fun League. Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman couldn't agree more, and he said harnessing celebrations is one reason why TV ratings have been in sharp decline this season.
"Because the league isn't fun anymore," Sherman said Thursday. "Every other league, you see the players have a good time. It's a game. This isn't politics. This isn't justice. This is entertainment. And they're no longer allowing the players to entertain. They're no longer allowing the players to show any kind of personality, any kind of uniqueness, any individuality. Because they want to control the product. They want to control the messaging, etc., etc."
This isn't the first time Sherman has criticized the league. He blasted the officiating last Sunday following a 25-20 loss to the New Orleans Saints. When asked if he was fined by the league for his comments, he said no.
"The truth is the truth. This is basically reality TV, so I guess I'm good for ratings," Sherman said, adding the Seahawks "probably lead the league in NFL apologies," for incorrect calls.
Sherman said the NFL's pass-friendly rules make it nearly impossible to play defense. His suggestion was to make the rulebook simpler and for the league to actually listen to feedback from players and coaches.
Sherman also called out the league for its hypocrisy of saying it wants players to be role models for children and wants to provide a family-friendly product, yet has Bud Light as one of its official sponsors. Sherman also questioned the league's motives when it comes to player safety.
"That's for public perception," he said. "They don't care about player safety. I've said that several times. But they do care about paying the quarterback $20 million and him missing a season. They do care about that.
"So whether they say player safety or whatever it is, they're tired of $20 million quarterbacks sitting on the bench or IR for the whole season, so they're going to do whatever they can to protect their investments, and that's universal."
Goodell took the brunt of Sherman's criticism.
"He hasn't done a great job, and it's obvious," Sherman said of the commissioner. "For us to say he hasn't done a great job is beating a dead horse honestly."