Photo Credit: DC Times
The Emmitt Smith Rule
Back Story: Emmitt Smith was a lethal threat running the football, and one of the biggest reasons for the Dallas Cowboys being dubbed as ‘the team of the 90s’. Smith would score many times over his career, and would usually stick to a routine of spiking the ball, unbuckling the chin strap, and taking off his helmet in one swift motion. Many believed that it was a display of hot-dogging.
The Rule: In 1997, the NFL passed a rule that prohibits a player from removing their helmet while on the field. Some hilarious instances where this bit a team in the buttocks? Dez Bryant (2013) and Dwayne Rudd (2002).
Rudd (2002) was a linebacker for the Cleveland Browns, and in the season opener against the Kansas City Chiefs, the Browns appeared to have achieved victory by stopping the Chiefs on fourth down, and Rudd, who thought he sacked quarterback Trent Green, celebrated a bit too early. Rudd threw his helmet to the ground, and believe the Browns had won 39-37. Sadly for the Browns, a penalty was called, and the Chiefs were able to call on kicker Morten Andersen for the game winning field goal.
Bryant (2013) was the most recent offender of the rule, as Bryant took offense to a non-call of defensive pass interference. Bryant took his helmet off to argue with the official, and his action penalized the Cowboys. As a result, it took them out of field goal range. Luckily for Bryant, the Cowboys still beat the Vikings 27-23.