You may have read my post last week, Tony Scheffler Watch: Analysis from the Experts. Sadly enough, Tony Scheffler did not find the endzone in Minnesota. The world will never see this celebration (at least until week 14, round 2 against the Vikings), but by the magic of twitter, we do know what it would have been.
T_Scheff85 Tony Scheffler
“@iTheRiffRaff: @T_Scheff85 pissed you didnt get to score today, wanted to see what kinda celebration you had in store.” Roof cave part 2…
So it appears that Scheffler would have made fun of the Metrodome roof collapse that occurred in December, 2010. Here’s a video:
This is one that I didn’t account for, which I’m a little disappointed about. I suppose this would have fallen under the category of “Mock the City” or maybe a new category, “Topical Humor.” I can’t in good conscience say that this celebration would have been better than Techno Viking (I’m not obsessed—I swear…okay, maybe I am), but I do think it carries the same mocking bite as the first two weeks while being easily recognizable if he had pulled it off. Anyway, since Scheffler and Burleson were both held without a touchdown in week 3, we didn’t see any creative dances, so we’ll move on to week 4 against the Cowboys.
Week 4: Lions at Cowboys
This one is ripe for the picking. You take the most prominent symbol of American folklore and make it the mascot of “America’s Team,” with the most recognizable owner in the league, a history of flamboyant, loudmouth stars that love to celebrate, the biggest, most extravagant stadium in the NFL with a Jumbotron the size of most single-family homes, a Super Bowl seating fiasco and there’s so much material that a prediction might be nearly impossible. But while the major news outlets have tired of this feel-good story, I will be watching, waiting for the next great TD celebration.
There’s a lot to pick from here—six-shooters, repeater rifles, killing Indians, horses, lassos, hogtying, big hats, stirrups, boots, showdowns. Cowboys are iconic symbols of the birth and “manifest destiny” of America, so of course they appear over and over again in popular culture. You see them in movies, TV shows, video games, ads, even in space. Let’s get into the possible celebrations you could pull from all this material. A gun celebration would probably be frowned upon by the league, as Stevie Johnson was fined for something similar last year. Aside from guns, horses are probably the one thing most commonly associated with cowboys. The only way for Scheffler to celebrate with a horse is to sneak one into the stadium (they’re pretty big and would probably qualify as a prop) or to pretend to ride one. As you can see here, pretending to ride a horse doesn’t look so cool, so I don’t think he’d do this one. For lassos and hogtying, this could be a really cool endzone celebration if he could lasso and hogtie Burleson, but the group celebration rule would come into effect and would result in a penalty. The cowboy hat, stirrups and boots are similar to the Viking hat from last week. Props can be penalized, so he’ll stay away from that. The showdown could be another cool group celebration, but you can hear from Tony Scheffler himself:
T_Scheff85 Tony Scheffler
“@A_Squared89: @Nate13Burleson @T_Scheff85 I’m thinking of a good ol’ fashion Western Showdown after a TD score? #10paces #DRAW!” u paying??
It’s safe to say he won’t want to pay the fine.
This one is even better than the variety we had for the Vikings game. Some of the biggest personalities and greatest celebrators played for the cowboys and one of the most infamous celebrations ever came against them. We’ll start with Michael Irvin, former Cowboys diva wideout in the 90s. In looking through the internet, he seemed to occasionally do a celebration where he spun his arm around before spiking the ball and raising his arms in the air. You can see the celebration at around 1:25.
Seeing as how one of the most famous Cowboys probably didn’t have one of the most famous celebrations, I’d say this wouldn’t be recognizable enough.
Next, we’ll look at former Cowboy, Deion Sanders, who is the king of swagger and celebrations in the NFL.
He had a few trademarks including high stepping into the endzone and his patented primetime dance. While these are iconic, they’re often imitated and because Deion played for a number of different franchises, this one wouldn’t be quite so targeted to the Dallas fans. Moving on.
The next player on this list has probably about ½ of the 10 or 15 most famous celebrations in the NFL. Terrell Owens is iconic for both what he did with the Cowboys and what he did against them. On September 24, 2000, while playing for the San Francisco 49ers, Owens twice ran to the star on the Cowboys 50 yard line after scoring a TD and raised his arms to the crowd.
The 2nd time he did it drew the fury of a Cowboys player who tried to tackle him before he could complete the celebration. Upon joining the Cowboys, TO did the same celebration and received cheers from the crowd. It has since been imitated, as recently as last October, when Chris Johnson celebrated on the star in the endzone after a game winning touchdown. Another of TO’s most famous celebrations was the popcorn celebration. When he signed with the Cowboys, he announced, “Get your popcorn ready,” and in his week 13 game of 2007 against the Packers, he grabbed popcorn from a fan in the stands and poured it onto his face.
I don’t think Scheffler would do either of these celebrations, as the star would stir up more trouble than the small jabs he took at the first two teams and the popcorn would be a penalty.
Another idea is that Scheffler could mock former Lions and Cowboys WR Roy Williams by doing his trademark first down symbol or the longhorn symbol he utilized with the cowboys.
In case you were wondering if the first down symbol would be appropriate in the endzone since it’s not really a first down, you can read about all the various uses of the motion here.
All in all, I don’t know if any of the personalized celebrations are the right fit. I think we’ll move on to the next section.
Mock the City:
In looking up common stereotypes of people from Texas, it seems like most of them are common to the cowboy stereotypes that I’ve already gone over, but there are a few more—being religious, closed-minded, being oil barons, and living in the desert, to name the most popular ones. Let’s check those ones out. As for being religious, the only thing I can think of is bringing a Bible out (using a prop), which would offend more than just Texans. Closed-mindedness and living in the desert aren’t really things you could communicate through an endzone celebration, so I’ll move on to the last one. You wouldn’t think it would be easy to imitate being an oil baron, but it seems that Hollywood has done all the heavy lifting already.
While it’s never explicitly stated where the Beverly Hillbillies are from, I don’t think it really matters too much. If Scheffler could pretend to shoot the ground and watch oil spray into the air, it would be a pretty successful celebration, I’d say.
Another way to make fun of Dallas is to…well, make fun of Dallas. For you kids out there, Dallas was a TV show that ran from 1978-1991. Obviously, it’s set in Dallas and had a part in creating some of those stereotypes I listed above. While clearly, it’s an iconic show for this city, I’m too young to have seen it and don’t know if there are any physical calling cards for any of the characters to mock. I’ll shelve this one and examine it further if it actually happens. Seeing as how the show has been off the air for 20 years now, I’m going to assume Tony Scheffler won’t go there.
Here’s where I think the best possibility for an epic celebration comes from—Topical Humor. Dallas’s new stadium has been heavily publicized, from its sheer extravagance to its enormous Jumbotron to its collapsed practice facility to its Super Bowl seating problems. Let’s start with the extravagance. Here’s an excerpt from its Wikipedia entry:
“The stadium is the largest domed stadium in the world, has the world’s largest column-free interior and the largest high definition video screen which hangs from 20 yard line to 20 yard line”….“A highlight of Cowboys Stadium is its gigantic center-hung high-definition television screen, at the time largest in the world, sometimes referred to as ‘Jerry-Tron’.”
I don’t know if there’s a good way to make fun of the screen other than to possibly pretend like it’s falling. I’ll rule this out.
Alright, next item on the list: collapsed practice facility. While not as calamitous as the Vikings stadium roof collapse, it’s in the same vein, so it’s worthy of consideration. Still, a man was paralyzed in the incident, so Tony should leave this one alone.
Here is where the possibility of an epic celebration comes in—Super Bowl seating problems. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say:
“On February 6, 2011 the stadium hosted Super Bowl XLV”…”Hours before kickoff, over 1200 seats were blocked off in the interest of safety. Approximately 800 people were given other seats inside the Stadium, however about 400 people were unable to be seated and were given a letter from the NFL that could be exchanged for three times the face value of the ticket. Those people were also given the option to either watch on a TV in one of the stadium’s lounges, where they would be unable to see the field in person, or watch on screens outside the stadium. The NFL also announced that those 400 people would receive free tickets to the next year’s Super Bowl. On February 9, 2011, the first lawsuit was filed against the NFL & Jerry Jones, with more suits likely to follow.”
At the time, this caused quite the uproar. It was all over the news, especially with so much Super Bowl coverage and so little to actually cover (which is always the case). So my idea for a celebration? Musical chairs among the players on offense. It would be subtle, very topical, hilarious, and take a nice, well deserved jab at Dallas. The only issue is the group celebration penalty, which is why I think it won’t happen. A guy can dream though, can’t he?
From all of this analysis, I’ll have to conclude that the celebration will be a Beverly Hillbillies style oil discovery. It would be fun, light, recognizable, and non-penalizable. It’s not the epic celebration that could have been, but I’ll take it.