DJ Moore on unsportsmanlike conduct penalty: It was a natural reaction

USA TODAY Sports

Panthers receiver DJ Moore sat by himself on the bench for a long time after Sunday’s game ended. He was one of two principal players for the Panthers in a loss that should have been an improbable win that became an improbable loss.

Moore said he was thinking about what might have been.

What would have happened if I didn’t take my helmet off, going back to what happened. That was about it,” Moore said, via video from Sheena Quick of 1340 AM Fox Sports.

Moore went from hero to goat after catching a 62-yard touchdown with 12 seconds left to tie the game at 34-34. But he celebrated by removing his helmet, costing his team an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.

The 15-yard penalty made the PAT a 48-yard try, and Eddy Pineiro missed, sending the game to overtime. Pineiro then missed a 32-yarder in overtime, and the Falcons eventually won 37-34.

“It was a natural reaction, but you still have to know you can’t do that,” Moore said, via DaShawn Brown of WSOC-TV.

Moore now forever will be linked with Dwayne Rudd for one of the most infamous blunders in NFL history, negating his great play.

In 2002, the then-Browns linebacker did something similar on what he thought was the final play of the game. His helmet toss celebration cost the Browns 15 yards and gave the Chiefs an untimed down, which they used for a game-winning field goal.

“We’ve got to do better as a team,” Panthers interim coach Steve Wilks said. “DJ is smart enough to understand that that’s something to learn from. Very talented player. Glad he’s on our team. But moving forward, that’s something we’ll learn from and won’t make that same mistake.”

37 responses to “DJ Moore on unsportsmanlike conduct penalty: It was a natural reaction

  1. Well I was mad at his natural reaction until the kicker missed on both opportunities to win the game in regulation and OT!!

  2. Tell that to somebody else. That has been a penalty your entire playing days.

    Selfish chump

  3. As an NFL observer since 1972, the fact that these types of penalties have such an impact on wins and losses nowadays shows either extreme lack of education, or that this game has totally gone from sporting competition to three ring circus.
    A 15 yard run or pass is extremely difficult and explosive; for players to be giving up 15 yards by way of lack of self control cheapens the fact that we watch to see what team is better.
    I thought Marshall’s wrong way run in 1964 was stupid; is is surpassed hourly in today’s NFL.

  4. Catch of the year combined with bonehead play if the year. Just when you think you’ve it all….

  5. Both the Falcons and Panthers tried really hard to lose that game. The Panthers just gave it a little more effort!

  6. Better known as the “Emmitt Smith Rule” .
    Smith had the habit of removing his helmet every time he scored. While the NFL was in the midst of banning touchdown celebrations, they decided to add that onto the pile.

  7. Something’s you cannot explain but when you feel self-entitled sometimes it bites you on the backside.

  8. This loss was more on Piniero than Moore. Moore certainly messed up by losing his head and letting the emotion of the moment take over, but Piniero has to make a kick. He’s kicking in a dome with pristine conditions and OT kick was chip shot. Piniero is the real goat.

  9. And I’m too darn dumb and undisciplined to control myself against anything “natural”. I wonder if he can make it to the toilet or if nature simply takes over in those cases as well.

  10. He was outside the field of play behind the endzone. No Fun League. But kicker missed two oppurtunities less than 50yds inside a dome. QB threw a pick 6 and missed Moore on another sure TD. Defense fell down when they had a lead on previous drive. It is truly a team loss and we still have the 2nd overall pick thanks to that. PJ Walker is not the answer and neither were Teddy, Sam or Baker

  11. He cost his team the game. It goes to show that the players don’t care about anything but themselves. “Look at me. me, me, me!”

  12. Sure, a natural reaction for a selfish toolbag that’s more interested in “Hey, look at ME!” and “I’m ready for my close-up.” every time they make a play.
    I hope his teammates kicked his *** in the locker room afterwards.

  13. And that’s the problem DJ. Your natural reaction was to showboat at her than think about the team

  14. I hate seeing coaches and players saying they’ll “learn” from something that’s a rule in the PROFESSION they play. Like the players that drop the ball before the end zone….

  15. It wasn’t bad enough he made a fatal mistake for his entire team by removing his helmet but to go back to the bench and smile and grin like nothing happened while a tv camera was focused on him should really get the teams fans and players exceptionally upset at him.its also time for the team to find a new kicker,this guy has nobody’s back.

  16. I’m not a fan of excessive celebration, but helmet removal on its own being a penalty is really stupid. That said, it IS a penalty, and homeboy knew that. He blew it. He made it harder for his team to win – and look what happened.

  17. Meanwhile the Panthers will get a better draft pick next year. They weren’t going anywhere this year anyway.

  18. I blame the kicker who missed two game winning FGs at the end.

    But more importantly, the Panthers weren’t going anywhere this year. It’s a teachable moment. Move on.

  19. ‘Look at me, look at me, let me take my helmet off first!’ Soooo many do it. Like the saying goes, Act like you’ve been there before!

  20. Bone head play by Moore but it’s not like Pineiro would have made the extra point at any distance. He is terrible.

  21. jjflash says:
    October 30, 2022 at 7:27 pm
    Terry McClaurin just took his off after a bomb to the one yd line. No penalty.

    yes he did. after a timeout. apparently all the eagles players took their helmets off before they hit the showers as well

  22. Same old DJ

    Looks good to great on routine plays but finds a way to disappear when needed most.

    Middle school football coaches teach their guys not to do this – but he’s going to learn from it.

  23. Winning a football game is like building a house of cards. Errors will be made along the way causing parts of the stack to tumble and making it harder and harder to complete on time. But those are overcome as the stack progresses. When it gets to the top, and the final cards are to be positioned with little or no time to recover, making the error then brings the whole thing down when time runs out. And, yes, it is that error and the person who commit’s that error that who is to blame for the collapsed mess at the end.

    All that to say sure, others made other mistakes in the game but all those were overcome and the win was right there in hand. A chip shot away. DJ Moore ignored a long-standing rule that every serious fan knows well and he let his own ego cost his team a victory. Period.

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