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The 5 O'Clock Club: Workmanlike - the Redskins aren’t celebrating TDs like other teams

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It’s 5 o’clock somewhere…

The 5 o’clock club aims to provide a forum for reader-driven discussion at a time of day when there isn’t much NFL news being published. Feel free to introduce topics that interest you in the comments below.

Everyone knows that the NFL relaxed the celebration rules this season. We’ve seen a whole new set of celebrations rolled out by teams, ranging from baseball to bowling, from duck-duck-goose to hide & go seek, to nut-crashing the goal posts.

Antonio Brown took touchdown celebrations to a new level when he slammed his crotch into the goal post after returning a punt 71 yards for a score in the Steeler’s 45-10 victory over the Colts. That celebration didn't come cheap, though; Brown revealed that he was fined $11,576 by the for the celebration, which went beyond this year’s relaxed rules.

One thing I’ve noticed (or not noticed, perhaps) is that the Redskin players haven’t joined in the frivolity.

Minnesota Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph (82) celebrates a touchdown with his teammates during the second half of an NFL football game against the Chicago Bears, Monday, Oct. 9, 2017, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings) ORG XMIT: CXB1
Minnesota Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph (82) celebrates a touchdown with his teammates during the second half of an NFL football game against the Chicago Bears, Monday, Oct. 9, 2017, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings) ORG XMIT: CXB1

I can’t honestly remember a single choreographed touchdown celebration from the burgundy & gold this year. Sure, Ryan Kerrigan is still doing his “Heartbreak Kid” pose after each sack, and you’ll see some spontaneous excitement from other players after other big plays for the ‘Skins, but I haven’t seen the Redskins embrace the opportunities now available for end zone celebrations that used to be banned.

This seems a bit ironic, since the rules against team celebrations and choreographed celebrations and going-to-the-ground during celebrations and all the other crazy prohibitions against celebrations were largely a reaction to the Redskins “Fun Bunch” who used to have their own special way of coming together as a unit after a score.

I’m old enough to remember the Fun Bunch. I was in my early 20’s while they were busily doing leaping high-fives to mark each receiving touchdown. I was 24 years old in 1984 when the NFL rule against “excessive celebrations” was first introduced.

I mention that fact so you won’t think I’m simply an old fart who likes to yell at clouds. I hated the Fun Bunch celebrations back in the early 80’s, and I’ve never been a fan of choreographed team or individual celebrations on the football field.

I’m from the “act like you’ve been there before” school of football.

I’m not a naturally effusive person. I don’t like showboating. I cringe when I see the “look at me” celebrations that have taken over the NFL now.

And that may be why I’ve been cognizant of the lack of such celebrations from the Redskins this year. I mean, they’ve certainly been excited. They’ve had fist-pumping, balls thrown in the air, balls handed to fans, hooting & hollering, even the occasional tight end making a basketball shot... but they haven’t had players lining up as pins in a bowling alley, or a half dozen guys playing leap-frog.

And I like that.

But I also wonder why.

In an environment where NFL Network’s Good Morning Football show has a weekly segment devoted to identifying the best celebration of the week; in a league that has tried to respond to players and fans pleading for the powers-that-be to allow some fun back into the game, why is it that the Redskins squad isn’t joining in on the ‘fun’?

Did the players have a meeting and decide not to participate?

Did Jay Gruden forbid TD celebrations?

Did Jim Tomsula simply threaten to kill anyone who took part?

Did Kirk Cousins suggest that it would be better not to?

Did the team make a pact to avoid celebrations until they’d won a playoff game?

Why don’t the Redskins celebrate touchdowns in a way that so many other teams around the league have embraced?

Just to be clear — I like the fact that the Redskins seem to have adopted a workmanlike attitude towards getting the ball over the goal line. I am thrilled to see spontaneous excitement, and there’s been no shortage of that sort of celebration from the ‘Skins this season, but I wonder about the reason why the Redskins seem out of step with other teams in eschewing the team celebrations we see from so many other squads.

In a season where the team hasn’t achieved any of its goals — no division championship, no playoffs — it seems appropriate not to be celebrating, but there’s no way that the players, from the very first TD of the season scored against the Eagles, would have known that the season would hold so much disappointment.


How do you feel about effusive, planned or choreographed celebrations by individuals NFL players or groups of players following big plays?

This poll is closed

  • 20%
    I love them! It’s about time the NFL loosened up the rules.
    (53 votes)
  • 26%
    Doen’t bother me. It’s a game, after all.
    (71 votes)
  • 45%
    I prefer players who just get back to the huddle and get ready for the next play, but I ain’t losing any sleep over the issue.
    (120 votes)
  • 7%
    I really hate them! Excuse me, there’s some ornery neighborhood kids outside; I need to go chase them off my lawn.
    (20 votes)
264 votes total Vote Now