MX23RW : Saturday, September 22 03:44:44

Ozzie Newsome reveals talks over N-word rule

NFL competition committee member Ozzie Newsome reveals that there have been talks regarding the introduction of a rule penalising players for using the N-word.

Baltimore Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome has revealed that there have been discussions over introducing a rule that will penalise players for using the N-word on the field.

The proposed rule change would see players handed a 15-yard penalty by officials if they use the racial slur during a match, and could be enacted as early as next month by the NFL's competition committee.

Newsome, who is on the committee, acknowledges that there had been talks over the situation and expects those to continue when they meet in Naples in Florida next week.

"We did talk about it, I'm sure that you saw near the end of the year that Fritz Pollard [Alliance] came out very strong with the message that the league needs to do something about the language on the field. So we did discuss over the last three days," Newsome is quoted as saying by ESPN.

"We will now go down to Naples starting next Friday and spend more time talking about it. We had some officials in our meeting that actually out there on the field and hear the language. We'll be able to put all that together and if there's a need to we will present something to our owners in Orlando.

"With any rule that we put into play we have to look at it from A to Z and find out any unintended consequences as much as the consequences. So, as it was stated in our meeting, there are mics everywhere, so if something has been said it's probably going to be captured somewhere. So there will be an opportunity to get it verified if we have to."

Pittsburgh Steelers safety Ryan Clark has already expressed his belief that such a rule would be difficult to uphold during a game.

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General manager Ozzie Newsome after a practice during the Baltimore Ravens rookie camp on May 5, 2013
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