In Addition to Dancing, NFL Also Has No Tolerance for Cartwheels

There wasn't much to complain about in the wake of the Bucs' 27-3 throttling of the Panthers yesterday, but if we're looking for things to bellyache about, I suppose the three personal-foul penalties following Jake Delhomme interceptions merit a mention.

Ronde Barber was flagged for unnecessary roughness, and Tampa Bay's sideline was also deemed very unsportsmanlike. The most egregious violation, however, went to defensive tackle Jovan Haye, who incurred a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for ... doing a cartwheel.

Ah, yes, the evil cousin of the Cupid Shuffle. It's been scientifically proven that somersaults are a gateway to most forms of booty-shakin', so it's probably in everyone's best interests that the officials nipped this in the bud before other enterprising souls got any bright ideas.

Bucs head coach Jon Gruden, like every other sane person who also happens to enjoy tackle football, was puzzled by the call:

"The celebrations -- I guess they don't want you to have much fun at all,'' Gruden said. "I don't disagree or want to get fined any money, but a guy does a back flip, a guy does a cartwheel -- I don't know, I've got to look into exactly what we did wrong and then I'll have a comment for you tomorrow. But I'm not going to lose sleep over that.

Our team is an excited bunch. They root for each other and when they get an impact play like that, we have a hard time controlling ourselves here in Tampa Bay and we apologize sincerely for that.''

Well, too late, Jon. You vaguely referenced officiating incompetence, and will be fined 25 large for your insolence. And in case it hasn't been made abundantly clear: DANCING WILL NOT BE TOLERATED IN THE NFL. Commissar Goodell has decreed it so. (Pony ridin' is perfectly acceptable, however. Makes sense.)

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