The End Zone: The Top 10 Touchdown Celebrations
Football season is finally here, and after an exhilarating Week 1, there have already been 42 touchdowns scored across the league. And though the NFL may have banned excessive celebration on touchdowns back in 2006, any NFL fan knows that the best part of football is of course: the touchdown dance (winning Super Bowls, mercilessly laying waste to your opponents, and tailgates notwithstanding). While players have attempted to take it down a notch to avoid fines, let’s be real – without a good touchdown dance, do the points even really count? (The answer is yes, they do.) Here are the 10 best touchdown celebrations of all time, to get you in the scoring spirit.
10. The Lambeau Leap: Popularized by Green Bay Packers safety LeRoy Butler back in 1993, it’s become a Lambeau Field tradition for players to leap into the stands and celebrate with the fans.
9. The High Step: No one loved celebrating more than Deion ‘Prime Time’ Sanders, and while goose stepping usually isn’t the best of ideas, the high step became his signature TD celebration.
8. The Funky Chicken: The first touchdown celebration that made room for the rest, was Billy Johnson of the Houston Oilers doing his best wedding impression and getting his Funky Chicken on in the end zone.
7. The Ickey Shuffle: It’s been imitated endlessly, but Cincinnati Bengals player Ickey Woods perfected the Ickey Shuffle back in 1988, well before it was adapted into the horrific Cha Cha Slide that’s reserved solely for the Lido deck of cruise ships everywhere.
6. The Squirrel: Another Bengals player with dancing feet, Kelley Washington, new choreography was key if he ever was going to live up to the Ickey Shuffle. And live up he did.
5. The Dirty Bird: Atlanta Falcons running back Jamal Anderson popularized this dance in 1998, the year his team went to the Super Bowl, and it galvanized a city to support their team. The Dirty Bird lives on even years after Anderson retired.
4. The Salsa Dance: New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz had a breakout year in 2011, but it wasn’t just his exceptional catching skills – it was his sweet Latin dance moves in the end zone that helped him dance his way right into my heart.
3. Anything Chad Ochocinco Did Ever: Does anyone love celebrating more than Ochocinco? The Bengals receiver famously set aside $100,000 during the 2009-2010 season, simply because the NFL fined him so much for his ridiculous, and ever-changing touchdown celebrations. How can you blame a guy that puts on a fake poncho and sombrero and dances it out? Or buries a sign in a snowbank begging the NFL not to fine him for a later touchdown? (They fined him anyways.)
2. Joe Horn’s Cell Phone: New Orleans Saints receiver Joe Horn, taking a page out of the Ochocinco playbook, scored over the New York Giants back in 2003, before running over to the goalpost and pulling out a hidden cell phone. The cost of that collect call? A $30,000 NFL fine.
1. Terrell Owens’ Sharpie: Still the ballsiest touchdown celebration of all time from a player who doesn’t shy away from ballsy touchdown celebrations, Terrell Owens rivals only Ochocinco in excessive celebrations. But the time he pulled a Sharpie out of his sock, signed the football, and then handed it to his business manager – who was sitting in a box paid for by the defensive back he just burned on the score? Priceless.
[Photos: Getty Images]
The End Zone, The Frisky’s new weekly football column by Beejoli Shah, is sponsored by Smirnoff Ice. Smirnoff Ice is not a sponsor of the NFL.