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Has Sporting Celebrations Gone Too Far?
by: Nick Fortier
It's the middle of the second quarter, inside the opposing teams 20 yard line. Aaron Brooks throws a strike to Joe Horn for his second touchdown of the game. But instead of giving the ball to the ref and running back to the sideline, Joe runs over to the goal post, lifts up the pad and pulls out a cell phone! Horn dials his home phone number and calls his son. That call may have been the most expensive call of Horn's life.
"I had told my kids to be at home, watching the game, and I told my momma, Mom, if I score the second one, I'm going to get my cell phone out." Joe said. But the NFL didn't see it as a joke and fined Horn $15,000 for exclusive celebrating. Horn said he was sorry, but later said it was all worth it.
A similar incident came in a game last year between the San Fransico 49ers and the Seattle Seahawks. Terrell Owens had his second touchdown grab and then did the unthinkable; he pulled a sharpie out of his sock, autographed the ball, and gave it to a nearby fan. T.O. said it was all in good taste but the NFL fined him $5000. The game was on Monday night so the whole nation was watching and that was when he decided to make his mark. You have to remember, Terrell scored earlier in the game and didn't do any celebration, so that means Owens was so confident that he would score again that he held off until later (as with the case of Joe Horn, he pulled out the cell phone on his second of FOUR touchdowns that night). That touchdown celebration may have been the greatest and most original of all time.
As memorable as those are, no one can forget about Tony Gonzales' "slam-dunk" over the goal post, and teammate Johnny Mortin's "Worm." Bengal wide receiver, Chad Johnson, also stepped into the spotlight with a nice touchdown catch then running over to grab his letter. Chad holds up an orange poster-board that reads: "Dear NFL, Please don't fine me AGAIN." They did, that letter that contained no vulgarity and didn't hurt or offend anyone cost Johnson $30,000. For professional athletes $30,000 isn't such a big deal, but why fine somone that much for something so innocent. If the NFL is going to fine anyone that amount of money, make it Warren Sapp when he shakes his 300+ pound "booty" after he makes a 1 yard touchdown grab. No one cares to see that anyway. Oh well, with professional athletes doing more and more to gain attention, it looks like the NFL will have to put up with it or find a new way to stop it. By the way, can't wait for T.O.'s next touchdown celebration to see if he tries to top Joe Horn's.
Written by: Fortier