The Washington Post

NFL benches pink flags after confusion

Penalties aren’t so pretty in pink. (Matt York / AP)

The NFL has decided that, when it comes to penalty flags, it no longer will think pink in October.

(Michael Hickey / Getty Images) (Michael Hickey / Getty Images)

Game officials will go back to using the regular yellow penalty flags rather than the pink ones used during October to promote breast cancer awareness, the NFL confirmed to USA Today’s Tom Pelissero.

This is the fifth year in which the NFL, the American Cancer Society and the NFL’s corporate partners have joined in “A Crucial Catch,” but the problem now is that players swathe themselves in so much pink that the penalty flags were confusing — to players, officials and TV crews.

Even more importantly, they didn’t register particularly well on TV.

Last October, pink flags were first used for one game at the request of Dante Cano, a young boy from Marlboro, N.J., to Commissioner Roger Goodell.

Follow @CindyBoren on Twitter and on Facebook.


After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.



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Cindy Boren · October 7, 2013