In case you haven’t read my previous Tony Scheffler Watch posts, this is a post breaking down his celebrations and predicting what’s to come. As you may know, Tony Scheffler has now had 3 catches in 4 games for the Lions and has barely sniffed the endzone in recent weeks. However, we’ve seen celebrations spread through the clubhouse like a disease—like a wonderful, happy disease, like whatever spiderman caught from that bug that made him good at climbing. Anyway, moving on. I think it would be best to expand my analysis to encompass all of the Lions related celebrations with Tony Scheffler as just the figurehead. So let’s get down to the analysis.
Week 4: Lions at Cowboys
First, we’ll start with the most relevant celebration. Upon taking an interception into the endzone, Chris Houston broke out into the “Primetime” dance. Here’s a video:
Excellent concept. In fact, I outlined this possibility in my post last week. He pulled probably the most recognizable dance from probably the most famous (or infamous) celebrator in Cowboys history. One thing I had forgotten about in my previous post was that Deion Sanders has a history with the Detroit Lions. Shortly after the 1989 draft, Deion Sanders was quoted as saying, “If Detroit had picked me, I would have asked for so much money, they would have to put me on layaway.” (Sadly, I can’t find any video of this on the internet) Of course, instead of Deion, the Lions took Barry Sanders. I don’t know if the Lions hold grudges for 22 years, but if they do, take that Deion! Deion was known for his cover skills and returns for touchdowns, so this was the perfect time to pull out that dance.
As you know, Deion’s signature was high stepping into the endzone, often with one hand behind his head and performing his “Primetime” dance. In reviewing the tape, Houston had a clear 5 yards or so to get some high stepping in after outrunning the last offensive lineman with a shot at him, but chose instead to just run the ball in. Poor form. Once he got into the endzone though, the dance was right on. Here’s a video for comparison:
He matched the rhythm, going in 1 and 3 step increments, but where he really got the subtleties of the dance down were in the arms. With the steps, he brought the arms up, really rounding it out. Here’s what Deion had to say:
That’s my boy Chris Houston that did Prime on the boys. I’m smiling every time a corner shows me love. Real talk.
I’ll go ahead and mark this one down as good technique. High stepping would have bumped him up to excellent, but the dance itself was right on. Top that off with the approval of Neon Deion and it’s safe to call that a win.
Upon sealing the victory and kneeling down on the final play of the game, Matt Stafford stuffed the football under his shirt. Here’s a picture:
No one really knows the concept behind this one, but there are theories. One side of the argument is that Matt Stafford just wanted to keep the game ball because it was a homecoming game and a big comeback and all of that. Perfectly reasonable, and where better to put a ball for safekeeping than the classic fake pregnancy belly. Right, well your hands would probably be #1 and then maybe tucked under your arm like a ball is normally carried. Pregnancy belly is definitely top 3 though. Anyway, it was an odd enough place to put it that suspicion has arisen that maybe it wasn’t just a convenient storage space. Maybe Matt Stafford was poking fun at a certain big bellied, big mouthed coach.
We all know this move from like 3rd grade, when cracking this joke makes you a superstar with your classmates.
But here’s where it gets interesting. Apparently, this maneuver has foreign appeal, as we see Lithuania’s Arvydas Sabonis doing it with a basketball here:
Still not convinced? How about other international soccer superstar Kaka?
Okay, but those are other sports, other sizes and shapes of ball. What about football? Oh, as you’ll see, it’s widespread in football too. Don’t believe me? Check out wannabe football superstar Matt Leinart
Okay, so down to the analysis. Out of all of these pictures, I’d say Ronaldo looks the most pregnant. Sorry Stafford, but maybe it’s just because he looks like Demi Moore from the cover of vanity fair. Oh, right, this is a Rob Ryan joke. So I should compare it to Rob Ryan.
Yeah, this is a pretty good match. I’ll call this excellent technique.
In case you think I haven’t had enough fun at Rob Ryan’s expense yet, you’re in for a treat. This one isn’t quite a Lions celebration. Actually, it’s not really a celebration at all. It’s an unfortunate screencap that makes me chuckle.
What do I think of when I see this picture?
Yep, that’s right. Disco Inferno.
Well, he didn’t really have a concept here. But maybe he did subconsciously? Has he been dreaming of the Discothèque? Anyway, this large, hairy, loudmouth defensive coordinator doing “The Point” (Apparently, this or “discofinger” are the official names according to disco dance step websites. Yes, I do way too much research for these articles) is a hilarious concept if he consciously or subconsciously thought this up.
Who would I look to for a comparison other than the symbol of disco in America, the man that popularized this dance move, John Travolta.
Now, Rob Ryan doesn’t have quite the height on the discofinger that Travolta has, but what he does have going for him is full arm extension and undeniable sass. Considering the perpetrator of this discofinger, I think he has to get bonus points for the attitude. Excellent Technique. Moving on to predictions.
Week 5: Bears at Lions
This section has a ton of options. Bears in popular culture are as prevalent as wind in Chicago (See what I did there? Imagine all the rain jokes I could come up with if they were playing Seattle). Anyway, we’ll start off with an actual bear re-enactment. Here’s a random youtube video of a kid pretending to be a bear:
It’s not very cool looking, so I don’t expect it to happen on Monday Night Football. After all, these celebrations have to be top notch to qualify for prime time.
Now, we’ll move on to bears in popular culture (there are a ton of them). The first thing I thought of was the Care Bears. If you’re not up to date on your Care Bears knowledge, you can check out their intro video here:
They’re widely recognizable, especially to children, they shoot beams of light out of their chests (something that is at least somewhat plausible to replicate in a TD celebration), and the best part is that one of them is a Lion.
Also, it turns out that Braveheart Lion is the creepiest cosplay costume ever.
The Care Bears don’t seem cool enough to fit the criteria here. Let’s move on.
Another bear character that’s widely recognizable that actually has a dance is Baloo from the Jungle Book. Here’s Bare Necessities:
As you can see, even a guy like Tony Scheffler could pull this off because the dance steps aren’t too complicated. Still, I think it might not be terribly cool or recognizable. We’ll put it on the back burner.
Again, there are a ton of cartoon examples – Winnie the Pooh, Yogi Bear (who actually played for the Chicago Bears), Smokey Bear, Snuggle, and Paddington Bear (he was from Peru?). I just don’t see very many opportunities there to be cool or to create an endzone celebration out of it. We’ll move on.
Compared to the other Tony Scheffler Watch posts, this one is pretty light on former players that have famous celebrations. However, the first one that comes to mind is the Superbowl Shuffle.
In 1985, the Chicago Bears recorded what went on to become a top 100 hit (it reached #41 on the US Billboard Hot 100) on their way to going 15-1 and beating the Patriots in the Superbowl. This is famous for the mediocrity of its dancing, which would make it perfect for a big man like Suh if he gets a goal line carry for a TD (shades of William “The Refrigerator” Perry). We’ll label this one as the front runner for now.
The next legendary icon of the Chicago Bears has to be Mike Ditka. Not only is he famous for his on-field accomplishments, but SNL’s skit, Bill Swerkski’s Super Fans, helped to raise both him and Da Bears to cult status. Here’s a video:
However, the only really recognizable pose for Ditka is this picture:
This picture would require people to lift Schwartz up on their shoulders, which might draw a group celebration penalty. If it were to happen after the game though, I don’t know that there’s anything that could be done about it.
The next celebrations I’m going to look at happened last week, and they’ve already been broken down here.
The first one is an attempted backflip by Marion Barber. Fortunately for everyone but him, he only made is about ¾ of the way around. Here’s a video:
Classic, epic fail. If it had gotten more press, this would be remembered for a while. This would be an excellent joke at the expense of one of the Bears’ players, and I think this one has a chance of happening.
The next one was a triple somersault by Devin Hester at the end of a return for a touchdown. Here’s a GIF:
This one is kind of run of the mill, so I don’t think we’ll see an imitation of it.
Mock the City:
What is Chicago known for? The list I’ve come up with is the Cubs, O’Hare Airport, wind, deep dish pizza, Oprah, and elevated trains.
Let’s start with the Cubs. Given the time of year, it would be appropriate to do some kind of Bartman/Alou celebration. Here’s a video of what happened for you young’uns and non-baseball people:
Obviously, it’s still a sore subject for Chicago and would be a nice jab at them. So given that the concept is good, the only issue is how to do a re-enactment of the event. Doing a true re-enactment would take two people to do, which would draw a penalty. The most recognizable action is the reaction by Alou to Bartman interfering with the play, so I think this one is a possibility.
The rest of the things I listed aren’t really easy to translate into a celebration, so we’ll leave those alone and move on to topical humor.
In the week 3 matchup of the Packers and the Bears at Soldier Field, with 2:44 left in the 2nd quarter, the game was stopped because of a spike sticking out of the field. Here’s a picture:
Soldier Field is notorious for its poor playing surface and this recent incident just added fuel to the fire. I think some TD celebration where Scheffler pretends to get poked by a spike in the ground would be pretty good. It would take a jab at the team that is harsh, but not overly mean, and it would be easily recognizable. The only problem with this celebration is that the game on Monday is a home game for the Lions, which would mean he would be making fun of Ford Field instead of Soldier Field. Look for this one later in the season when the Lions play in Chicago.
From all of those possibilities, the only ones that I could really see happening are the Superbowl Shuffle, Marion Barber’s Incomplete Backflip, and the Bartman. My front runner has to be the Bartman just because of the pain it would cause to the fans.