By Matt Dolloff, CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) — The Patriots defense mostly had a good day on Sunday against the Cleveland Browns, but hey, the other team has players too. The Browns’ playmakers had their moments during the Pats’ 33-13 beatdown, highlighted by Andrew Hawkins’ touchdown reception on the Browns’ second drive of the game.
Hawkins burned rookie cornerback Cyrus Jones on a double-move to the back-left corner of the end zone for the easy catch, but that wasn’t the real highlight of his score: it was his “celebration.” Or anti-celebration, if you will.
An intrepid tweeter who goes by “Justin” sent out a quick video of the celebration and soon went viral. Watch as Hawkins makes the catch, places the ball on the ground, then spins back around and walks back to the Browns sideline, like an obedient robot. Justin’s tweet sums up the NFL’s overbearing rules regarding celebrations and unsportsmanlike conduct penalties:
Hawkins has already learned that showing any kind of emotion of personality in your touchdown celebrations will get you flagged and demonstrative gestures simply aren’t worth the penalties. The NFL is already successfully weeding out such celebrations after it fined the Redskins’ Josh Norman for making a bow-and-arrow gesture and penalized the Steelers’ Antonio Brown for suggestive dance moves.
How long until the NFL closes another loophole and starts flagging celebrations like Hawkins’ for “mocking the officials?” They’ll find a way.
Matt Dolloff is a writer for CBSBostonSports.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect that of CBS or 98.5 The Sports Hub. Have a news tip or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff and email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.