If you have not noticed by now the NFL is regarded by many fans around the league as the “No Fun League,” and rightfully so. No more can players conduct team oriented celebrations like the Washington Redskins “Fun Bunch.” A dance that included a group of players in which they rejoiced their excitement for reaching the end zone, with a jumping “high-five,” or individual ones, like former San Francisco 49ers WR Terrell Owens did parading on the Dallas Cowboys star. And if such an occurrence occurs, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will hand down a hefty fine, and possible suspension. As the NFL official rule book states:
Rule 12, Section 3, Article 1: Unsportsmanlike Conduct
Part (D): Prolonged or excessive celebrations or demonstrations by an individual player. Players are prohibited from engaging in any celebrations or demonstrations while on the ground. A celebration or demonstration shall be deemed excessive or prolonged if a player continues to celebrate or demonstrate after a warning from an official.
Part (E): Two or more players engaging in prolonged, excessive, premeditated, or choreographed celebrations or demonstrations.
Part (F): Possession or use of foreign or extraneous object(s) that are not part of the uniform during the game on the field or the sideline, or using the ball as a pop.
Part (H): Removal of his helmet by a player in the field of play during a celebration or demonstration, or during a confrontation with a game official or any other player.
So with a 15-yard penalty assessed for excessive celebration, which 49ers player has the best end zone dance within the NFL guidelines?
I have identified the top three players and ranked them accordingly, based on both the Forever Faithful’s reaction and of course the originality of the celebration. So without further ado, let the countdown begin.
3. RB Frank Gore
The saying, “Act like you have been there before,” 49ers RB Frank Gore exemplifies this to a tee. After scoring 51 regular season touchdowns over the course of his career, Gore does not boast or dance, he just simply hands the ball to the ref or keeps it in his grasp while jogging to the sidelines. Rarely if ever will you see him spike or dance, as he is a true professional. And although, he did use the Kapernicking celebration in the Super Bowl, it was a sign of respect for his quarterback rather than a slap to the face to the Baltimore Ravens. However, the “dirty bird” dance he used in the 2013 NFC Championship Game caught me off guard and was fun to watch.
2. WR Michael Crabtree
The player known to many as “King Crab,” WR Michael Crabtree has finally found his groove in the end zone. A celebration he created himself, Crabtree will conduct his “Crab Shake,” dance as he gets really low and moves his arms from side to side. On the outside it may look like he is showing off, but I can assure you there is more to that than meets the eye. One of the primary reasons Crabtree does this dance is to help raise money for the Boys and Girls Club. That’s right every time you see Crabtree perform the Crab Shake, Ubisoft (makers of the Hip-Hop Dance Experience) makes a charitable donation on his behalf. And although we won’t see much of his dance during the 2013 regular season, do not count him out for the playoffs, as he may be ready to help make that “Quest For Six,” a reality.
1. QB Colin Kaepernick
The player known for his “Kaepernicking” celebration, in which he flexes his right bicep while showing off his tattoos, QB Colin Kaepernick has quickly turned the celebration into a marketing phenomena. Whether it’s t-shirts or commercials, any time you see someone “Kaepernicking,” the rights belong to the man who created the celebration, as he patented the term early this year. It is by far the most talked about celebration in the Bay Area as everyone from children to adults, join in on the fun. So the next time you see an opposing fan come into Candlestick Park, don’t say a word and just flex your arms and say, “Kaepernicking!”