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The Bob Costas halftime essay on end-zone celebrations

Steve Johnson AP

During halftime of last night’s Steelers-Chiefs game, NBC’s Bob Costas addressed the issue of players who put themselves ahead of their teams via celebrations that result in the loss of 45 feet of field position.

I’ve received many emails expressing support for those views, and dozens of similar comments appeared last night in the neverending stream of questions and comments from the SNF Extra live chat.

Of course, not everyone agrees with the sentiments expressed.  Patriots receiver Chad Ochocinco, who has run afoul of the rules regarding celebrations on several occasions (but who has had nothing to celebrate this year), said on Twitter that the “monologue sounded like a sermon at a funeral.”

I thought it made sense given the reaction to Stevie Johnson’s homage to Plaxico Burress to post it here.

And so here’s the full text of the Costas essay.  Feel free to post your own views in the comments. . . .

For those of you too busy keeping up with the Kardashians to notice, we live in a culture that in many ways grows more stupid and graceless by the moment.  Sports both reflects and influences that sorry trend, so on playing fields everywhere, true style is in decline, while mindless exhibitionism abounds.

In the late sixties, the Giants had a receiver named Homer Jones.  He invented the spike — and it was great; a simple, elegant punctuation that somehow has devolved into this. . . . (Video of excessive celebrations was displayed.)

Given the tone of the times, it’s probably too much to expect that most players would appreciate that back in the day, this guy (Barry Sanders) was much cooler than this guy (Mark Gastineau), or that there is a difference between spontaneous and/or good-natured displays of enthusiasm and calculated displays of obnoxious self-indulgence.  No, that train has already gone so far down the wrong track, there’s probably no turning back.

So our suggestion here is a more modest one:  Hey, knuckleheads, is it too much to ask that you confine your buffoonery to situations that don’t directly damage your team?  Week after week, game after game, we see guys who think nothing of incurring penalties for unsportsmanlike conduct, costing their teams valuable yardage, even late in close games.

Today’s most conspicuous culprit:  Buffalo’s Stevie Johnson, who after a TD catch versus the Jets, thought it would be a good idea to go Marcel Marceau, pantomiming, among other things, Plaxico Burress shooting himself in the leg.  But in this case, it was Johnson who shot himself in the foot, as his display cost his team a 15-yard penalty on the ensuing kickoff.  And given a short field, the Jets proceeded to score in a critical game that wound up 28-24, New York.

Which raises this question:  Where are the coaches in all this?  Guys are routinely benched or called out for blown assignments.  When is a coach going to make an overdue statement and sit a guy down on the grounds of pure selfishness and unprofessionalism detrimental to his team?

By the way, late in the loss to the Jets, Johnson dropped a pass that could have led to a Buffalo win. Shockingly, he didn’t follow it with a rehearsed “my bad” dance of apology.  Maybe he just forgot.

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104 Responses to “The Bob Costas halftime essay on end-zone celebrations”
  1. cometkazie says: Nov 28, 2011 9:32 PM

    The only celebration I like is the Packer flop, or whatever they call jumping in the stands.

    I think the ego of these players is inversely proportional to their intelligence.

  2. hooks024 says: Nov 28, 2011 9:32 PM

    Fact of the matter remains, as unfortunate as it is, if they can score touchdowns, they will find work. Where’s the blame on the front office personnel who hand these knuckleheads millions of dollars, regardless of how many penalties they may have incurred? The only way to curb this problem is to not sign these idiots in the first place, and that will never happen as long as they can help you win.

  3. buttercheck says: Nov 28, 2011 9:35 PM

    God I wish he’d stop pontificating! That was actually lamer then his crappy Olympics babbles or–worst of all–lousy stories of him and his dad leaving a baseball field by walking on it.

  4. alleycatzz says: Nov 28, 2011 9:37 PM

    Man, do you guys like to kiss your parent (company’s) ass. Is it part of your contract to suck up to them so shamelessly all of the time?

  5. habsman says: Nov 28, 2011 9:42 PM

    Costas nailed it!

    These celebrations and chest thumping by players are designed to draw attention to themselves, the team be damned. These modern day players are a disgrace to B. Sanders, W. Payton, Rice, Monk, Brown, and many others who simply passed the ball to the ref. It’s all about them. The worst was Deion who was always more concerned with himself. Even when he was elected to the HOF he wanted a bandetta on his sculpture so he would stand out from his fellow inductees.

    The game doesn’t need this celebration crap and the sooner its eliminated the better.

  6. themonster700 says: Nov 28, 2011 9:42 PM

    these old school folks need to retire. we r living in a 21st century

  7. aljack88 says: Nov 28, 2011 9:43 PM

    “Patriots receiver Chad Ochocinco, who has run afoul of the rules regarding celebrations on several occasions (but who has had nothing to celebrate this year), said on Twitter that the “monologue sounded like a sermon at a funeral.”

    Too bad ole Chad didn’t spend more time learning his play book rather than twitting on Twitter. One good thing about when this season is over is that it should be the end of this clown.

  8. theandy59 says: Nov 28, 2011 9:44 PM

    The only thing dumber than some of these self-indulgent displays is the rule against them. I think the celebrations are ridiculous, but generally harmless and I hate when a team gets penalized for excessive celebration.

  9. mrbigass says: Nov 28, 2011 9:44 PM

    They need to put in all their contracts that they forfeit a game check for each celebration or taunting penalty.

    Bet they figure it out real quick…….

  10. smartbutlazy says: Nov 28, 2011 9:45 PM

    Amen Bob.

  11. davin510 says: Nov 28, 2011 9:46 PM

    Even if what he says has merit, it’s hard to get behind Costas because he comes off so preachy. Ironically, I find his halftime sermons to be a greater example of “obnoxious self-indulgence” than most TD celebrations.

  12. wordpressnamesstink says: Nov 28, 2011 9:46 PM

    Boo hoo! They are having fun playing a game! They should be professional game players (huh? sounds like a contradiction) and take it as seriously as Costas takes himself.

  13. maxl49 says: Nov 28, 2011 9:47 PM

    ahhh i remember the good old days when there was an actual highlight show and no Bob Costas before the sunday night game …

  14. whatwouldlombardido says: Nov 28, 2011 9:47 PM

    Costas makes an articulate case for enforcement of a reasonable standard by coaches on their players. If these men who play a kids’ game want to act like spoiled brats, reward them with a “timeout” on the bench. Whether it’s for a quarter, a half or a game, the obvious solution is to deny these aspiring mimes their stage and their audience.
    The problem arises with the very coaches who could change the bad behavior: how do you bench a star player who could help you win one of only sixteen games for a stunt that might cost you field position or points? The guys who should encourage discipline among their players are professionals dependent upon those same players to keep their jobs. That’s why it takes three years before (and usually a new regime) to admit to a draft mistake. Perhaps what the NFL needs is a structure for fining owners and coaches for their players’ bad behavior. Yeah, like that’s going to happen.

  15. drfever73 says: Nov 28, 2011 9:53 PM

    I thought he sounded like a whiney / Andy Rooney / wanna be bizatch.

  16. bman0921 says: Nov 28, 2011 9:53 PM

    Bob Costas hates fun.

  17. DenverBroncosFan_NoMatterWhat says: Nov 28, 2011 9:53 PM

    Mr. Costas…”Why so serious?”

  18. hiperactivodg says: Nov 28, 2011 9:53 PM

    There’s nothing wrong with celebrating a TD or big play! those are really hard to come by, even Belichick has told to his players to show emotion and be happy when they do make such a play, because it is the resukt of a hard week’s work…
    And is idiotic to compare a regular job to what these guys do, IT’S NOT THE SAME!, they can loose everything in less than a second, not only their livelihood but even the ability to walk!
    They scored a TD? go ahead and show how good is it, how awesome that feeling is! they are not harming anyone… and the ones Ocho used to make were the best!

  19. sportsfan11 says: Nov 28, 2011 9:54 PM

    Half time celebrations is one of my favorite parts of football! I think the 15 yards is well worth it!

  20. klutch14u says: Nov 28, 2011 9:57 PM

    The fact that some of these guys make nearly a million dollars a game is the reason a coach won’t sit them. Way too much at stake

  21. uvmcatamounts says: Nov 28, 2011 9:57 PM

    Am I the only one who thinks the problem is with the RULES?? Football is entertainment. Why should celebrations affect the game at all?

  22. cured76 says: Nov 28, 2011 9:58 PM

    @cometkazie ah yes, the Lambeau Leap

    I don’t mind a good celebration every now and then. Even some of the painstakingly pre-rehearsed ones. I only draw the line at what would be taunting the other team because I don’t think most celebrations intend that. In other words, I’d probably get a chuckle when a few players do a “team picture” celebration but I think TO should have drawn a suspension for celebrating on the 50 yard line (twice!) at Cowboys Stadium. To each his own.

  23. nmking26 says: Nov 28, 2011 9:59 PM

    hooks024 says: Nov 28, 2011 9:32 PM

    Fact of the matter remains, as unfortunate as it is, if they can score touchdowns, they will find work.
    _______________________

    Well…. yah, scoring touchdowns is kind of the goal in football.

  24. maxvv says: Nov 28, 2011 10:03 PM

    Quit moralizing, Costas. TD celebrations are awesome.

  25. thelegends123 says: Nov 28, 2011 10:03 PM

    Settle down with all the flabbergasting…tiki is jealous. I don’t care about the celebrations…I thought it was hilarious…he will get fined, why don’t we demand the fine dollars goto a charity. He went to the ground and his team was penalized…you get enough speeding tickets you either learn your lesson or goto jail…or in football suspended. All this flabbergasting will only result in the networks no longer televising the celebration like they do with the streakers…and I am angry I don’t get to see the streaker get popped by the police like the good ole days. I actually that Costas was interviewing for Andy Rooney’s job.

  26. zenofobe says: Nov 28, 2011 10:04 PM

    Costas- correct: Barry Sanders, coolest TD (non)-celebration ever.

  27. axespray says: Nov 28, 2011 10:06 PM

    the nfl is still a game? right?

    as in a Game… that thing we do for fun.

    Idk, I just don’t like that excessively preachy “Act like you’ve been there before!” mindset.

    It’s a GAME.

  28. euroamericans says: Nov 28, 2011 10:07 PM

    Hurumph

  29. dirtdawg55 says: Nov 28, 2011 10:07 PM

    As inane as some of the TD celebrations are, what’s worse are the innumerable celebrations of routine plays, or worse, the celebration of a play that wasn’t worth celebrating. I have seen players celebrate a hit on an offensive player after they converted a third and long. I’ve seen players on teams being absolutely pasted celebrate a routine hit as if they just won the Super Bowl. You watch – I am sure some NY Giant will celebrate some routine play tonight even though they are down 21 – 3.

    Having said all of that, I actually don’t mind some of the stuff and showboating that goes on. It gives us villains to root against and brings some much needed excitement to the league. Are most of these guys buffoons? Absolutely! But do I really want them to go away? Nah, probably not.

  30. kane337 says: Nov 28, 2011 10:12 PM

    Larry Fitzgerald, Andre Johnson, and Calvin Johnson are arguably the 3 best receivers in the league. They don’t do stupid endzone dances. The rest of the receivers should take notice.

  31. malgorthewarrior says: Nov 28, 2011 10:13 PM

    TD celebrations are awesome. It’s not the players, but the rules, that should change.

    The only thing missing from that halftime sermon was Bob Costas yelling at kids to get off of his lawn. I bet he wouldn’t have liked it back in the day when all those “colored players were out there hot-doggin on the basketball court.”

    The NFL wants to change the rules and market to promote offense, but they don’t want the players to celebrate because it’s just too bombastic.

  32. euroamericans says: Nov 28, 2011 10:13 PM

    The movie Idiocracy is going to be moved from the comedy genre to the documentary genre one day

  33. kleppnasty says: Nov 28, 2011 10:15 PM

    Unless its something that takes more than 30 seconds to do, who cares. It’s fun for some and the rest can ignore it. The bigger issue is when a defender celebrates a tackle or a catch after a regular play and ends up late to the huddle.
    A td celebration is done while the kicking team comes out, so it’s not that big a deal. Costas and other complainers come off like crotchety old men, ignoring the fact that ‘in their day’ they had the same self indulgence. I mean, they started using face masks bc a qb was too handsome to risk damage (look it up, it’s true) not bc it was good for the game or a players health, but bc that player wanted to do ads and play.

  34. jbravo2312 says: Nov 28, 2011 10:18 PM

    Players get arrested for all sorts of felonies, we college icons covering for child molesters, but his highness the almighty Bob Costas ( because he’s sooooo righteous) gives a eulogy like the game of football is dead because of td celebrations…… WOW

  35. ohcomeonthatsfunny says: Nov 28, 2011 10:21 PM

    Cool story bro….

  36. whatwouldlombardido says: Nov 28, 2011 10:21 PM

    Obviously only Jets fans are posting tonight. Definitely no Bills fans.

  37. 2chronix7 says: Nov 28, 2011 10:22 PM

    Lambeau Leap.

    Mile High Salute.

    Those two touchdown celebrations make it about the fans and the team, the rest of it is pure garbage.

  38. SOBEIT says: Nov 28, 2011 10:25 PM

    Costas is just another old man yelling “get off my lawn and it was better in the old days” bs. Sports are to escape the rule driven society that keeps everyone oppressed into a certain way of behaving…thereby suppressing choice and freedom of expression. Goodell is just as much to blame. So a defender can go around and do the airplane soaring, but another player on the offensive side of the ball cannot do the same plane maneuver while adding a little comedic flair. That skit was funny and even better than the hidden cellphone or the signing football autograph. They let players like Plaxico back into the league, but a player who just makes fun is stepping over the lines. Please! The NoFunLeague continues to ruin a sport that will soon be your local churches flag football if they have their way.

  39. crunchyclam says: Nov 28, 2011 10:27 PM

    ” Week after week, game after game, we see guys who think nothing of incurring penalties for unsportsmanlike conduct, costing their teams valuable yardage, even late in close games.”
    ———————————————————

    What does players getting flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct have to do with all the sermonizing about celebrations? The majority of unsportsmanlike conduct flags are for players hitting, punching, or kicking after the play and somehow these celebrations are costing teams ‘week after week’. Costas comes across as an oversensitive ninny who took advantage of a minor controversy. Time to take him out to pasture.

  40. rmc1995 says: Nov 28, 2011 10:31 PM

    Somehow Costas managed to skip over White Shoes Johnson and the Fun Bunch on his spotty historical way to scold this group of young men that have had more rules and restrictions than ever. The league doesn’t allow team TD celebrations so they have to do solo acts. What Costas fails to realize is that a lot of these so called self serving celebrations are group efforts talked about and laughed over during the week. Most are done for their teammates to enjoy not for Bob Costas to misinterpret.

  41. sepl12 says: Nov 28, 2011 10:32 PM

    as a general rule I agree with Costas and dislike the celebrations… but the fake shooting himself while playing plaxitive was fantastic.

  42. nesuperfan says: Nov 28, 2011 10:34 PM

    Agree or disagree, until they change the rules, they should be professionals, and contain themselves. Team first, and you simply don’t put your team at risk for your own selfish reason.

  43. buffalojill716 says: Nov 28, 2011 10:39 PM

    I can’t take it anymore. Honestly, people are making a bigger deal out of this than Suh’s BS. It was a JOKE. He didn’t actually shoot anyone…you do know that right?? It was funny. I laughed out loud. EVERYONE has blown this so out of proportion that THAT is what is embarrassing. Grow up! I thought those tough New Yawkers could take a joke. Apparently not. And does anyone else think the media is being SUPER hypocritical? Remember how they roasted Plax when he shot himself?! Anyone?? Bueller?? Right.

  44. kurb21 says: Nov 28, 2011 10:55 PM

    You know what…I liked the team end zone celebrations. I loved when TO pulled out the popcorn. I loved when Chad Johnson used the pylon as a putter. I liked the imagination, the personality and the showmanship of Deion Sanders and the other high profile players of the recent past.

    I also like big hits and players who pride themselves on being physical. I liked the game prior to Bill Polian taking away the defenses ability to play actual defense against a passing offense.

    I guess what I am trying to say is: I liked the NFL more prior to Roger Goodell. Bob Costas, I want to be entertained, not worry about a social statement.

  45. steelhammer92 says: Nov 28, 2011 10:56 PM

    Get over it Costas… You want to know what is pathetic? The fact that these stupid celebration penalties can even affect the outcome of a game, even though they have absolutely nothing to do with what happens on the field. If it isn’t taunting, it shouldn’t be a penalty.

  46. warvette says: Nov 28, 2011 11:00 PM

    i agree. it’s like baseketball already

  47. bigbeefyd says: Nov 28, 2011 11:02 PM

    When I played in high school, our coach used to tell us “When you get in the end zone, act like you’ve been there before”. Even an over-enthusiastic spike would cost you 500 yards worth of wind sprints at the next practice. We took state in my senior year. And never, not even once, did anything beyond high-fiving or hugging a teammate. Just sayin’.

  48. edukator4 says: Nov 28, 2011 11:05 PM

    yet the nfl will use the celebrations to promote the game. t.o. dumping popcorn in his face was all over nfl network

  49. rajbais says: Nov 28, 2011 11:07 PM

    I like Bob, but wah wah wah!!!!

    Johnson’s celebration was stupid, but come on Bob!!!!

  50. PFTiswhatitis says: Nov 28, 2011 11:30 PM

    Ochocinco was right. It was like a sermon at a funeral. Get off your high horse Costas.

    Let me add that last week the NFL fined Gronkowski for spiking the ball too close to an opposing player. Were they worried that it hurt his feelings?

  51. skinsfaninnebraska says: Nov 28, 2011 11:32 PM

    Costas is 100% right, but nesuperfan summed it up best in his post here.

  52. j0esixpack says: Nov 28, 2011 11:35 PM

    As funny as it was, Johnson’s Plaxico impression may have cost Buffalo the game.

    The question of “where are the coaches”is a good one. The coaches want players pumped up but don’t want penalties.

    Belichick put a stop to Wes Welker’s more subtle and cerebral tribute to Twinkletoes Ryan and benched him for the start of a playoff game to send a message.

    Other coaches need to get that message too unless they welcome penalties and lost games

  53. rmorris78 says: Nov 28, 2011 11:55 PM

    He wasnt penalized for the Plaxico impersonation, he was penalized for going to the ground!!!

    He’ll be fined for it though.

  54. mattym0531 says: Nov 29, 2011 12:21 AM

    As much as I like Bob Costas I feel that the celebration of Stevie shooting himself wasn’t the issue. The only thing that he did wrong was go to the ground which is against the rules. I agree that getting the penalty is putting yourself above the team and is wrong but the Plax celebration was kind of funny. When a player gets in the end zone they should be allowed to do whatever they want within the rules. I am a Giants fan and the whole Plaxico incident haunted me for years, but it was a witty celebration and entertaining (until the crashed jet) which got the penalty. I just feel as if Bob should tone it down because if he would not have gotten the penalty then it would not have been such a huge deal. The game of football is fun for these players and we as fans watch it to be entertained and that celebration was entertaining.

  55. jayaredee says: Nov 29, 2011 12:24 AM

    The bottom line is this. No matter if you agree or disagree the Rules are the Rules. Stevie Johnson knew rules, but he decided to break them when he went to the ground, and he cost his team the game and any possible chance to make the playoffs.

    Sorry but you can’t tell me that he hadn’t planned this way in advance if he hapended to score a TD. This act was premeditated and selfish.

    If you know the rules DONT BREAK THEM.

  56. CaJonMcChicken says: Nov 29, 2011 12:26 AM

    Celebrations are celebrations. Doesnt matter if your spiking the ball, doing the ickey shuffle, or tebowing. If you don’t want any celebrations, don’t let the team score.

    I found it funny how Costas says spiking the ball was so elegant when Rob Gronkowski got flagged for spiking the ball after a TD.

  57. CaJonMcChicken says: Nov 29, 2011 12:28 AM

    Also Stevie Johnson penalty did not cost them the game. A professional NFL kicker damn near whiffing on a non-moving ball did.

  58. Chris Fiorentino says: Nov 29, 2011 12:34 AM

    This kind of thing is why I can’t stand Bob Costas and his holier-than-thou attitude. Maybe the rules are too restrictive on the celebrations, Bob? Maybe when the Redskins were dancing in a group it was all in good fun celebrating and now that you can’t even sneeze without it being a 15 yard penalty, it kinda puts the “No Fun” in the NFL? Maybe, just maybe, the NFL was more fun in the 80’s and even into the 90’s and today, well, it just isn’t much fun anymore.

  59. worldsgreatest says: Nov 29, 2011 12:38 AM

    Yeah, this rant was dumb.

    The only thing more annying than these celebrations could possibly be, is how annoyed football fans seem to be by it.

    No Fun World

    How DARE someone have fun at their job if I’m miserable at mine. The nerve!

    Good grief.

  60. skulz fontaine says: Nov 29, 2011 12:38 AM

    ‘Sports Entertainment’! It brings in the money. Just ask Vince McMahon.
    Sportsmanship is dead. Long live the showboat. Costas knows that. Hey Bob? Can you say steroids and baseball?

  61. edgerules says: Nov 29, 2011 12:45 AM

    I have to love and agree with the people calling Costas “the man who shouts ‘get off my lawn’.” That is exactly how Costas is acting. Why are self righteous jerks like him, and the media making such a huge deal over this?

    The problem for me is not the TD celebration. It is the fact that the NFL , in its infinite wisdom, changed the rules on the TD celebrations, turning the sport into this sterilized version of what it used to be: a fun, entertaining sport.

    The NFL also gave in to the political correctness brigade who whine and cry about “taunting.” Hello. These are supposed to be GROWN MEN, not WIMPS. If they can’t deal with some wide receiver doing some stupid dance, they should not be on the field.

    Why do we as a society, and such make such dumb, unnecessary rules that are so overprotective? It is dumb. I mean, as for the dance in question, look, Plaxico Burress was the idiot who went to the club with a gun. He knew that the state of NY had very stringent gun laws, so he knew he was risking getting caught. He single handedly hurt himself, and his team. He didn’t think he was NEVER going to be made fun of, did he? Why is Costas getting on his high horse?

    Should Johnson have “gone there?” Maybe not, but Burress’ stupid actions just set Burress up for someone to make jokes about them. As for costing the Bills the game, I think it was more Johnson’s dropped passes near the end, then the penalty that cost them the game.

  62. pike573 says: Nov 29, 2011 12:51 AM

    Much ado about nothing

  63. buffalodiehard says: Nov 29, 2011 12:54 AM

    Any Bills fan who’s been following this team for a few years knows Stevie has been a breath of fresh air for this franchise. He was a 7th rounder who blossomed into our #1 receiver who routinely plays hurt and all-out. He’s also a prankster and at times puts the “clown” in class clown.

    But he’s our clown. Y’all can have your weird halftime eulogies and holy-than-thou-art attitudes. I’ll stick by Stevie because I just love the dude.

  64. dolfan1111 says: Nov 29, 2011 1:21 AM

    costas takes p for an ex cinvict who shot him self and i guess its ok as long as santonio does his jet when he scores people need to lighten up costas u ever play the game tjats what i thought

  65. stebutt says: Nov 29, 2011 1:43 AM

    It’s the ‘no fun league’. Taunting an opponent probably isn’t on, but coming up with an inventive celebration is just a bit of fun. Boo to the killjoys.

  66. Andre's Johnson says: Nov 29, 2011 1:50 AM

    I agree with Costas, but I also agree that he comes across as a stuffy old man who would just as soon tell Stevie Johnson to get off his lawn.

    So what do you do? His point is that, as obnoxious as the celebrations are, his biggest problem is with the guys who are hurting their teams with penalties. He’s talking about players whose self-indulgence morphs into just plain selfishness. I love it when a 340 pound defensive lineman picks up a fumble and rumbles into the end zone and jumps around and can’t believe he just scored a real touch down. Give me that genuine joy and competitiveness before the manufactured and rehearsed “celebrations” any day.

    Especially when it hurts the team, which is Costas’ point.

    As a Texans fan, I can’t think of any of our players who do this crap. Andre Johnson sometimes spikes the ball but often just flips it to the official and jumps into the stands to celebrate with the fans. Arian Foster drops the ball and bows to the fans with his hands folded. Jacoby Jones does an occasional silly dance, but he’s never been flagged.

    This is definitely a case of “different strokes for different folks,” but I think we can all agree that costing your team fifteen yards is stupid and self-destructive.

  67. tatum064 says: Nov 29, 2011 1:53 AM

    childish finger wagging tends to precede childish celebrations. GET OVER IT!

  68. bearsrulepackdrool says: Nov 29, 2011 1:58 AM

    I’m lost on why two things keep getting lost in all this Stevie Johnson non-sense.

    1. People keep saying that after that penalty the Bills automatically gave the Jets a short field. Correct me if I’m wrong but didn’t the kicker miss the football on the kickoff and HE gave the Jets a short field?

    2. Why are people avoiding the fact he imitated a plane crashing in NY? (NJ whatever)

  69. velardem7 says: Nov 29, 2011 2:32 AM

    Bob Costa’s Essays are great…great journalism is both informative and involves a little bit of sensationalism–it must be entertaining and stir up the pot!
    I personally enjoy watching end-zone celebrations and hate to see a player celebrate a big play when their team is down 31-7 or some other lopsided score.
    The NFL is a game and a business. There are times when it is OK to celebrate, but there is a limit. Sometimes players need to simply get the job done, act like they’ve been there before and simply get back to work and win the game. In this case, Smith gave up 15 yards in a close game–that’s like roughing the passer after he throws an incomplete pass–just plain dumb!

  70. listenupcupcake says: Nov 29, 2011 2:51 AM

    Costas is spot-on, both about the stupidity and cupidity of these “celebrations” and the larger point about the overall decline of American culture.

    Yes, this is really about the decades-long dumbing down of America, the erosion of morality and any sense of proportion in favor of self-indulgence and excess, and the triumph of the media’s appeal to the ever lowest-common denominator, and the exaltation of ghetto culture, over the old-fashioned, hum-drum, but essential everyman’s aspiration to work hard and stay humble, aka the protestant ethic. (Aside for the PC police – I’m not Protestant.)

    Football “celebrations” are a noxious symptom of a larger, far more insidious social disease that has been gradually working its way through and weakening this country for 50 years.

    The US is going down the tubes, and soon, as surely as the seemingly unsinkable Titanic did. Even though some can see it coming, many others refuse or are unable to see what’s in front of us, and without all of us pulling together the country is likely too far gone to prevent its collapse and ensuing catastrophe.

    Yes, Costas is right, but it won’t make any difference – he’ll be hooted down by the lowlifes, their apologists and naysayers, and things will get worse, and worse, and worse – until they implode.

    So learn Mandarin, my friends – it will be helpful much sooner than you think…. You’re welcome.

  71. Reggie's Bush says: Nov 29, 2011 3:05 AM

    It is a game where people run around catch a ball and hit people. A game that kids play. A freaking GAME

    Should they have ties and loafers on to go with their uniforms also? Get over yourself Costas

  72. Eric Fay says: Nov 29, 2011 4:34 AM

    at work, we muted his sermon and cranked up the tunes

  73. snarkzilla says: Nov 29, 2011 5:51 AM

    >we r living in a 21st century

    Q.E.D.

  74. snarkzilla says: Nov 29, 2011 5:54 AM

    >TD celebrations are awesome. It’s not the players, but the rules, that should change.

    Some are fun to watch, some make me cringe. But when your team is getting bslapped around the field, just don’t.

  75. griblets says: Nov 29, 2011 6:26 AM

    There’s nothing wrong with a little fun by celebrating a TD, but the celebrations that focus on the individual, not the team, especially the ones after a routine play, are what turns off many people, including me.

    Most pre-meditated celebrations are selfish and disrespectful, and makes the players look like buffoons. It a direct reflection on our society, which seems to become more selfish and less respectful every day.

  76. roverboy1949 says: Nov 29, 2011 6:35 AM

    When a team is in a game situation, the players should spend more effort on winning instead of prancing. The time for celebrating is AFTER you win the game. I know that each play is a win or loss in the overall struggle to victory, but waiting to celebrate with your TEAM when you win is the true joy of playing the game. Look at baseball. When a player makes a great play, he doesn’t jump up and down and bring attention to his greatness. He simply moves on to the next play. Maybe it has something to do with the type of people that play the different games. There is violence in football like no other sport, but the reward is there like no other sport. It must be nice to be so talented that you can make more money in one year than most make in 10 years ( or in some cases in a lifetime ).
    Costing your team valuable field position so you can dance is not just selfish, but is also disrespectful to the other members of your team. Apologizing after the fact doesn’t help when you cost your team the game.

  77. teambringitstrong says: Nov 29, 2011 7:35 AM

    bigbeefyd says: Nov 28, 2011 11:02 PM

    When I played in high school, our coach used to tell us “When you get in the end zone, act like you’ve been there before”. Even an over-enthusiastic spike would cost you 500 yards worth of wind sprints at the next practice. We took state in my senior year. And never, not even once, did anything beyond high-fiving or hugging a teammate. Just sayin’.
    ———————————————————————–

    So, we won a couple of high school NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS and did dives, flips and everything else in the endzone.

  78. peed1 says: Nov 29, 2011 8:01 AM

    Act like you have been there before.

  79. discosucs2005 says: Nov 29, 2011 8:22 AM

    Costas is living in a misremembered dream world of yester year that hasn’t existed since the ’60s. In 1969 Elmo Wright, who played for the Kansas City Chiefs, is believed to be the first person to perform a touchdown celebration. In the ’70s Billy “White Shoes” Johnson used to do the “Funky Chicken” after scoring, while playing for the Houston Oilers. The Fun Bunch High-five, the Dirty Bird, and the Lambeu Leap were all celebrations that turned into traditions.

  80. billsin20xx says: Nov 29, 2011 8:35 AM

    Johnson is an unrestricted free agent after this year, I wonder if this will cost him some money?

  81. nflofficeadmin says: Nov 29, 2011 8:38 AM

    I don’t see the harm in a celebration. It’s fun and it’s entertaining.. and entertainment is the purpose of televised sports events. However, if you’re team is losing (especially, losing badly) and you celebrate you should be thrown on of the game because that is just weird to celebrate when you are getting thumped by an opponent.

  82. bullcharger says: Nov 29, 2011 8:49 AM

    The way the NFL is managed leads players to believe their individual performance is all that matters. The fans say “be a team player” but the players contracts say “get more touchdowns, get more catches”. If they don’t acheive individually they get cut and their contract and salary are gone, regardless of team performance. Endzone celebrations bring media attention to the players directly which leads to endorsement money, which brings more stability.

    It’s totally understandable why players do it.

    If the fans don’t like it, the NFL could easily end it with bigger fines or suspensions. Right now the NFL want to keep it in the game, but they want it to be reasonable.

  83. easyeddie says: Nov 29, 2011 8:57 AM

    TD dances and whatnot do not bother me per se. What does however is celebrating when your team is getting it handed to them or when a player chest thumps or points to his name on his jersey after making a normal play.
    What’s the old saying? “Act like you’ve been there before.”

  84. 3octaveFart says: Nov 29, 2011 8:58 AM

    discosucs2005 says: Nov 29, 2011 8:22 AM

    “…In the ’70s Billy “White Shoes” Johnson used to do the “Funky Chicken” after scoring, while playing for the Houston Oilers. The Fun Bunch High-five, the Dirty Bird, and the Lambeu Leap were all celebrations that turned into traditions”

    So, stupidity is now the tradition?

    None of these attention seeking azzclowns would have lasted five minutes in a locker room with Jack Lambert, Deacon Jones, Dick Butkus or Jack Tatum…

  85. makinghtmlcodeforfacebook says: Nov 29, 2011 9:10 AM

    All the NFL needs to do is make the play clock 25 seconds after a touchdown is scored and start it immediately after the player crosses the goal line. Then, if there is a delay of game penalty on the extra point attempt, the extra point may not be attempted. Boom!

  86. melikefootball says: Nov 29, 2011 9:11 AM

    It is interesting that there is never a flag for all the celebration either in the endzone for a TD or on the field when a player does his job and makes a tackle or a DB breaks up a pass. Then you see a flag when a player stares down a player to long. Fine happy God-del should fine each childish act. After watching all this as a fan I have a hard time believing these kids care about winning a game.

  87. m2karateman says: Nov 29, 2011 9:12 AM

    Many of you are completely missing the point of Costas’ statement. He’s not against TD celebrations, and he’s not against fun. What he is saying is that when a player chooses to do a celebration that is against the rules, he is putting himself before the team. And he’s right. Yes, the player scored. But did he do it by himself? No, he has teammates. So why should he put his teammates in a difficult position by taking a penalty for a “look at me, how funny am I” type of celebration.
    And making fun of someone who accidentally shot himself isn’t what I’d call hilarious. As dumb of a thing as Burress did, he paid the price. No reason to drag that issue back into the limelight. And the fact that the celebration helped Buffalo lose the game is testimony to how STUPID that was by Stevie Johnson. So, mock one stupid thing by doing another stupid thing and lose a game for your team. Real smart.
    TD celebrations are fine. But they shouldn’t be these dramatically rehearsed fiascos that hold up the game. Get in there, do your thing, and go back to the bench. What’s so hard about that?

  88. comeonnowguys says: Nov 29, 2011 9:13 AM

    The TD celebrations are bad.

    Dancing and posing after you tackled a RB for a two-yard gain are in my mind infinitely worse.

    I saw that a few times in a certain 4pm game last week. What the hell are these guys thinking?

  89. hdmoyer says: Nov 29, 2011 9:28 AM

    @easyeddie,

    Couldn’t agree with you more. A few weeks ago I was watching the Colts get pummeled and the cornerback made a tackle for a loss with 6 minutes left to go and he got up and did a 15 second dance while shaking his head up and down and I thought to myself you got to be kidding right?

    It was refreshing to see Victor Cruz not do his salsa dance last night when he scored because he knew his team was getting beat down and felt it to be inappropriate to celebrate.

    Brandon Jacobs on the other hand….yep, he’s got a fast car….

  90. rdmoody says: Nov 29, 2011 9:37 AM

    This past Sunday a future Hall of Fame receiver was honored by having his name entered into the Colts Ring of Honor. Marvin Harrison did his job with skill, atheletism and class. When he scored a touchdown he didn’t need to dance like a fool or act out some stupid ritual. At the most he might have spiked the ball, otherwise he carried the ball back to the bench and received congratulations from his team there. The prima donnas playing the game now are self centered, and they are teaching our children by their actions that it’s not about a team effort, but all about the individual.

  91. alaric411 says: Nov 29, 2011 9:47 AM

    Costas and his TV cohorts have a very effective way to eliminate stupid TD celebrations–stop showing them on TV. If nobody can watch them, the clowns will stop performing.

  92. flipadelphia says: Nov 29, 2011 10:12 AM

    So evidently everything is off limits and out of line except for the Lambeau Leap….which is the biggest “look at me” celebration in football.

    Figures, anything the darlings of the nfl do is ok….even beat their girlfriends after winning on thanksgiving. Which is being completely ignored because Suh is a big ol’ meanie. Boo hoo.

  93. steelerfaninva says: Nov 29, 2011 10:16 AM

    Bob Costas was right on- there has to be some accountability from the coaches and the players. I love football but the celebrations have gotten out of hand.

  94. skepticalcommentreader says: Nov 29, 2011 10:27 AM

    Yes, Bob Costas, clearly the end of western civilization is near because Stevie Johnson mocked a man who thought it was a good idea to put a loaded gun down his pants.

    I can’t believe the Jets and their fans are protesting this. Really guys? Really?

    You aren’t such sensitive folk that I can’t see you cracking jokes at Burress’s expense on your own.

    TD celebrations are fun and humorous. I remember when the Vikings played the Bengals 2009 and the topic of conversation what the subject of Ochocinco’s celebration would be.

    The Vikings D was fine and considered the conversation funny, and Favre openly looked forward to seeing what it would be. Unfortunately, the game was a butt-whupping and we didn’t get to see anything.

    STOP RUINING THE FUN OF THE GAME!

  95. vadog says: Nov 29, 2011 10:28 AM

    I can understand, high fiving your teammates, spiking the ball after a TD…even jumping on your teammates back! However, the choreographed celebration crosses a line. It’s no longer a celebration, but an “act” that is designed to humiliate the opponent. Therefore, it has no place in sports. A primary reason that sports exists is that sportsmanship can also exist.

    Bob Costas is 100% correct. All sports needs less showboating and more sportsmanship.

  96. woodsa22 says: Nov 29, 2011 10:32 AM

    Infuriating reading some of the comments!! ARGH.

    Bob is exactly right. He may not like the celebrations. He may in fact love them. BUT, IT DOESNT MATTER. The rules say you cant do it. So when players decide to do and it cost the team sometimes more than 15 yards, cough cough desean jackson, it is ridiculous and selfish.

    I love the celebrations. I want to see fireworks, and backflips and cellphones and all kinds of stuff. BUT not at the cost of a ton of yards.

    Same thing – I was on a plane and guy wouldnt shut off his cellphone. It held up the flight and we were late.

    I DONT CARE if cellphones are detrimental to planes or not. In fact i have been told by several experts that it doesnt. I DO CARE however, if it makes me late to where im going. If the rule is, “turn of all electronic devices…” simply TURN OFF YOU CELLPHONE.

    No celebrations and no cellphones until it becomes less of an infraction to do so. Its that simple.

    Well said Bob, well said.

  97. mrhojorisin says: Nov 29, 2011 10:46 AM

    Costas was right on. I’m tired of all these pathetic “look at me!” celebrations. Act like you’ve either been there before, or like you expected to be there in the first place. And that goes for offensive AND defensive players.

  98. hatesycophants says: Nov 29, 2011 11:02 AM

    Bob Costas is thoroughly irrelevant. His conmentary has been of limited interest or note for the past 20 years. He should have zero contact with football. Bob should be busy glorifying the hypocrisy of MLB and finding just the right shade of hair dye. Actual football fans don’t give a damn about this.

    Go Lions! Go Badgers!

  99. mbhcu98 says: Nov 29, 2011 12:49 PM

    So, it’s the likes of stevie johnson and people like him, who are bringing down this country huh? Sounds like code. The problem isn’t any of these celebrations or anything like them. America has always known how to have fun. Of course a certain part of society couldn’t let out their true feelings for most of this country’s existence, some would say still.
    Americas’ problems are with the american. Not with having fun but, the erosion of education and the fact there are not enough jobs here. Fix that and the breakdown of the family and America is back on course. These celebrations may in some way be a result of these problems but, IN NO WAY is the reverse true. To insinuate they are is childish and not deserving of any respect. costas is an idiot for missing the real point.

  100. chris1982 says: Nov 29, 2011 1:53 PM

    my god there are a bunch of pretentious old men posting responses to this story. what exactly is the harm of these celebrations aside from the idiot fact that they are penalized? the whole idea that you get a 15 yard penalty for celebrations is ridiculous and has no impact on the game unless they actually delay the game. get over it people, the players play a game for millions and if they want to do ridiculous dances when they score or when they come up with a big tackle who gives a flying f!?

  101. blowtorch1964 says: Nov 29, 2011 2:19 PM

    The remark about “acting like you’ve been in the end-zone before” is from Vince Lombardi.

    Most of these guys over do the celebrations. I like Victor Cruz’ salsa dance, but notice he didn’t do it when his team was getting whuped.

  102. wcdunkenfield says: Nov 29, 2011 3:12 PM

    The concept of the NHL “penalty box” needs to be brought over to football, and a whole host of penalties result in 2/5/10 minutes in the box. Teams would play without a substitute for the offending player (down to a level of say 7 players) and then we’ll see how long some of these headhunting and grandstanding penalties go on…

  103. discosucs2005 says: Nov 29, 2011 4:07 PM

    @3octaveFart

    3octaveFart says:
    Nov 29, 2011 8:58 AM
    discosucs2005 says: Nov 29, 2011 8:22 AM

    “…In the ’70s Billy “White Shoes” Johnson used to do the “Funky Chicken” after scoring, while playing for the Houston Oilers. The Fun Bunch High-five, the Dirty Bird, and the Lambeu Leap were all celebrations that turned into traditions”

    So, stupidity is now the tradition?

    None of these attention seeking azzclowns would have lasted five minutes in a locker room with Jack Lambert, Deacon Jones, Dick Butkus or Jack Tatum…
    ___________________________________

    Well, the Fun Bunch won a Super Bowl so I think they did ok. And for some calling touchdown celebrations stupid, you sure have a classy name. Is maturity really something you want to get all in a huff about?

  104. stanmark says: Nov 30, 2011 9:42 AM

    I think everyone forgot the 08-09 seasons where the TD celebrations were insanely hilarious. TD celebrations are a good thing. I find it kind of dumb that you can’t go to the ground after a TD, but you can go jump into the stands, or spike the crap out of the ball, or run up to a cheerleader on the opposing team.
    Does anyone remember what Steve Smith, TO, and Chad Johnson used to bring to the games with their celebrations?

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