NEW YORK—As part of a comprehensive league-wide policy change going into effect immediately, the NFL officially announced a new rule Monday aimed at protecting quarterbacks from any blatant and especially brutal criticism. “This has quickly become a greater issue in the sport as a whole, so we have taken steps to ensure that a team’s quarterback cannot under any circumstances be hit with criticism deemed to be severe or in any way excessive,” the league said in a statement, which went on to explain that considerable penalties and fines will be imposed upon anyone who decries a quarterback’s high interception rate or inability to make key third-down completions. “A passer can no longer be slammed by the media in the aftermath of a loss, and the ban on attempts to disparage a quarterback’s questionable composure and decision-making in the pocket will also be strictly enforced. There is simply no place for this type of behavior in our league.” The statement also clarified that while NFL officials are currently contemplating similar guidelines for wide receivers, such protections will not apply to any players on defense.

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