Friday, January 14, 2005

Moss fined $10,000 by NFL for fake mooning celebration

Moss fined $10,000 by NFL for fake mooning celebration

I wasn't going to whine about this. His team beat my team. But the reaction is so over the top it's noteworthy:

"'Ain't nothing but 10 grand. What's 10 grand, to me?' said Moss, whose salary this season is $5.75 million. He then jokingly suggested he might perform a more vulgar celebration next time."

Add this to the mooning incident itself, his response in the postgame interview last week ("Yeah, we whooped they ass"), and the :02 walkoff the week before. I love the First Amendment. It gives everyone the constitutional right to be foolish.

Does it matter? Randy Moss makes the plays (well, when he feels like it). He's one of the best at what he does. Does it make any difference that he's a jerk? Does it make any difference that fair play, grace and sportsmanship are clearly not part of Randy Moss's value system?

Dad The Coach put some good sportsmanship into my non-athletic body, so I sort of feel like it does. Ultimately that decision is up to the league. Financial sanctions don't seem to have any impact. If the NFL wants to stop such behavior, perhaps game-level penalties are needed:

The flag flies and the referee turns on his loudspeaker.

"Unsportsmanlike conduct, Number 84, offense, is ejected from the game. The touchdown is nullified, Green Bay's ball on the 20 yard line."

Is that too harsh? Perhaps. Expression is expression and the mooning didn't actually affect the game like, say, a facemask or a late hit. And it's admittedly a judgement call (like any official's decision) and some definition would be required.

But if you called back just one touchdown, if the obnoxious behavior was held directly against the benefits of the phenomenal talent, it would be a loooong time before it happened again...

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