The issue over whether Santonio Holmes should have been penalized 15 yards for celebrating -- after a significant pause -- his winning touchdown reception in the Super Bowl might grow now that he's officially been fined $10,000 by the league.
Holmes was not flagged by the officials after it occurred because they apparently did not see it. Holmes impersonated a move by basketball's LeBron James when he shook the football and tossed it into the air. But he did not do it immediately after he caught the winning touchdown pass from Ben Roethlisberger with 35 seconds left. The 6-yard touchdown pass gave the Steelers a 27-23 victory over the Arizona Cardinals.
Mike Pereira, the NFL's VP of officiating, said during the week after the game that the celebration should have drawn a 15-yard penalty on the following kickoff. Those kinds of celebrations automatically draw a $10,000 fine and an NFL source confirmed that is what Holmes received.
But celebrations such as Holmes, which occur significantly after the play and away from the field, might not be illegal in the future, if the commissioner of the sport has anything to do with it.
Roger Goodell believes the competition committee should consider making such late celebrations legal.
"It's my understanding that it happened about 15 seconds after the play," Goodell said at the Pro Bowl in Honolulu, "so I think that's something the competition committee is going to have to look it -- is there a period of time where it really doesn't have the same impact that it would if it was done immediately?
"As you know, part of this rule is to avoid having a reaction from opposing players and from what I could see, only seeing it once, it didn't seem like it was anywhere near that. It's something the competition committee will look at."