Amen: Prayer and the NFL

Last week Husain Abdullah garnered an excessive celebration penalty for the Kansas City Chiefs. He wasn’t doing the running man, or any crazy backflips, or even chucking the ball into the stands. He did this:

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That’s right. He was praying.

Many players pray in celebration. Praying before, during, and after play is normal and even traditional. Tim Tebow made praying in the end zone so common that it became known as Tebowing!

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So why did Husain Abdullah get penalized for something so very common?

The Official Reason
Players are not allowed to celebrate on the ground. This prevents players from injury. For example, they cannot belly-slide (like they do in soccer) or back-flip and land on the ground.

We’ve established that many players take a knee to pray, but Abdullah took two knees to pray. Sitting prostrate is clearly a danger.
*Sarcasm Font*

The Real Reason
The Majority Culture in America ranges from misunderstanding Muslims to straight up hate, and it is permeating everything … Even football.

As a Christian, I am nauseated by the continuous, disingenuous invocation of my God’s name. Watch the ESPY’s: “First of all, I’d like to thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ …”
Really, Big Pimpin’? Cuz your rap sheet says you have a DUI and domestic violence charge, and your Instagram shows you in the Champagne Room on the bye week.

Meanwhile, Abdullah risked his career by taking last season off to follow a tenant of his faith and travel to Mecca.
Yet he gets penalized.

All the Praying!
I’m not saying there aren’t genuine Christians. Of course there are! I’m just saying let fair be fair and let everyone who wishes to pray in a celebratory moment do so. Whenever people can be more spiritually connected, the better.

All the Celebrating!
In fact, I say no excessive celebrations at all. Use props. Boogie. Lay prostrate. Whatevs. Just have penalties for Delay of Game (don’t waste my time, yo) and Taunting (don’t be an ass, yo).

Update …
The NFL did make a statement that the penalty should not have been called … after the game. But it was.

Oh, NFL, I’m praying for you.

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Earl Thomas and Russell Wilson were lauded for praying during a recent game.

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2 responses to “Amen: Prayer and the NFL

  1. The hidden problem is the trickle down effect, the man mentioned above, Tebow, who so ever celebrates post touchdown, they are grown men paid to entertain us. They should not be considered role models but rather performers. We love some, we hate others, we tune in for the next big moment. It’s when it becomes acceptable to celebrate in the end zone that kids start mimicking the self serving pompas displays of their adult idols that I get worried. Football is the greatest team sport in the universe, teach children the value of celebrating with and for the team, not finding one more way to draw attention to the individual. As far as the religious element, I am sure that devote youth will score touchdowns, it’s those making hollow gestures in the hopes of receiving attention, in faiths name none the less, that the world needs no more of from kids. Let the adults perform, leave the kids the opportunity to be part of something bigger than themselves. Or I could be wrong…..

  2. Pingback: Stupid Questions #4: Why Can’t They Do That? | therookiegirlblog·

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