Antonio Brown Is The NFL's Real-Life Hingle McCringleberry
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Antonio Brown Is The NFL's Real-Life Hingle McCringleberry

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell must watch Key and Peele because the league's excessive celebration penalties and fines don't make much sense right now.

Antonio Brown Is The NFL's Real-Life Hingle McCringleberry
Comedy Central / YouTube

Antonio Brown has a colorful, fun personality, and he often showcases this when he scores touchdowns on the football field (he scores a lot of them). This season, he has upgraded his touchdown celebration arsenal to include a triple hip-pump "twerk" a la Hingle McCringleberry. And when he was penalized and subsequently fined for that, he broke out a "hammerhead" version of the same celebration, for which he was also penalized and fined.

Hingle McCringleberry is, of course, the fictional rookie tight end from Penn State played by Keegan-Michael Key in one of the more well-known Key and Peele skits "Excessive Celebration." In the skit, the Rhinos' rookie tight end scores a touchdown and is penalized for celebrating by performing a triple hip-pump. The first two pumps are fine, but the penalty, the officials claim, is drawn as a result of the third pump. McCringleberry then scores two more touchdowns and continues to celebrate while trying to prevent the officials from throwing a flag.

Now here is where it gets interesting — Antonio Brown scored a touchdown in week one against the Washington Redskins and followed it with a similar celebration. And as I mentioned before, he, like McCringleberry, was flagged for a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. He was also fined by the league office, and, unfortunately, we never hear whether McCringleberry had any of his weekly pay docked or not.

Brown was penalized and fined because his celebration fell under what the league describes as "sexually suggestive acts."

In week 3, Broncos wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders found paydirt and celebrated in similar fashion, but heeded official Peele's advice and stopped after two pumps.

A flag was indeed thrown for the celebration, but later that week, news broke that came as a bit of a head-scratcher — the league office would not fine Sanders for the celebration, despite the fact that Brown and Sanders' celebrations were almost identical.

A week later on week 4 Sunday Night Football, Brown found the endzone twice against Kansas City and broke out his hammerhead "twerk," which was hardly sexually suggestive, yet still drew the ire of the league in the form of another unsportsmanlike penalty and fine from the league office.


Now that time, it wasn't even three pumps, as if the pump count should really determine whether a player should be fined or not.

After drawing so much attention to himself for the wrong reasons, Brown has vowed to be smarter but plans to keep "having fun" when he scores. That could be hard to do as taunting and unsportsmanlike penalties have seen a sharp increase this season as the league appears to be cracking down on even the smallest infractions of sportsmanship. They call it NFL for a reason -- it's the No Fun League.

The entire situation really is strange, and one cannot help but to wonder why Brown appears to be getting singled out by the league in this matter. We've only seen two different players perform hip-pump celebrations this year but if one pump is really the difference between getting a fine and getting just a penalty, that seems a tad bit ridiculous as two pumps seems just as "sexually suggestive" according to the rulebook.

Perhaps NFL officials have been told to keep their eye out for Antonio Brown this year, or maybe Roger Goodell is just a big fan of Key and Peele. They are a fairly comedic duo, after all. Always remember the two pump limit!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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