September 30, 2014 1:38 pm -

The NFL admits they were wrong. Again.


When Kansas City Chiefs safety Husain Abdullah intercepted a Tom Brady pass and returned it for a touchdown Monday night, he did what so many other NFL players do to celebrate a big play: He paused to make a religious gesture of thanks.

But Abdullah, a devout Muslim, found that his religious display was met with less latitude than, say, Tim Tebow when he brought Tebowing into the NFL. Abdullah was penalized 15 yards for unsportsmanlike conduct because he slid to the ground, then knelt in the end zone.

A strict reading of the rulebook reveals why Abdullah was flagged. Using the ground for celebration is not allowed, although Tebow was allowed to kneel.

But you can imagine what the outcry would be if a Christian were penalized for praying after a touchdown. We’d be hearing about the lack of religious liberty in America and how the Obama administration is too pro-Muslim.[su_csky_ad]

D.B. Hirsch
D.B. Hirsch is a political activist, news junkie, and retired ad copy writer and spin doctor. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

12 responses to NFL Penalizes Muslim Player For Praying After Touchdown

  1. Carla Akins September 30th, 2014 at 1:47 pm

    I thought the penalty was for sliding into the end zone, not the prayer. The sliding thing is always a penalty. But hey, I’m a Chiefs fan so it’s fine by me.

    • Suzanne McFly September 30th, 2014 at 1:57 pm

      That is what I thought, you can’t celebrate your actions in flamboyant fashion that may seem like your being a braggart.

      • mea_mark September 30th, 2014 at 2:02 pm

        That is the spirit and intent of the rule. Like a lot of rules and laws it can be twisted by the letter and used in an inappropriate and unintended way.

    • arc99 September 30th, 2014 at 1:57 pm

      and I am a 49’er fan. so how about a thank you note for the quarterbacks we keep sending you.

  2. fancypants September 30th, 2014 at 1:51 pm

    HEY ! stop that or its coming out of your paycheck

  3. R.J. Carter September 30th, 2014 at 1:55 pm

    Umm… No. We don’t do that to people here, NFL.

  4. forpeace September 30th, 2014 at 2:20 pm

    It didn’t even take NFL few minutes to penalize this player.

    But, it took NFL few months and so many cover-ups and lies after the public pressure to talk about what the player did to her wife in the elevator!


  5. forpeace September 30th, 2014 at 2:23 pm

    BTW, that is not a Muslim prayer, the Muslim prayer doesn’t take few seconds.

    Just saying.

  6. Bunya September 30th, 2014 at 2:33 pm

    I didn’t see the game. Did they eventually give him credit for the TD?

  7. Budda September 30th, 2014 at 3:14 pm

    I think “Xtians” should be penalized for the same thing…it’s a football game not a church service!!

  8. forpeace September 30th, 2014 at 5:31 pm

    There is an update to this news:

    NFL says Husain Abdullah should not have been penalized for praying after touchdown

    Chiefs safety Husain Abdullah followed in the footsteps of many other players on Monday night when he celebrated his interception return for a touchdown by going to his knees in prayer. Unlike those other players, Abdullah was penalized for going to the ground under the league’s rules for unsportsmanlike conduct. The only difference between Abdullah and the other players was that Abdullah is Muslim and his prayer therefore looked a bit different than what we’ve seen from others, although that didn’t make it any odder since the NFL doesn’t have rules governing which deity their players are permitted to offer thanks to after a touchdown.

    Abdullah said he thought the penalty might have been for sliding to his knees rather than dropping, but NFL spokesman Michael Signora didn’t split any hairs on Tuesday when announcing that the official erred in throwing the flag.

    “Husain Abdullah should not have been penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct following his fourth quarter touchdown,” Signora wrote in an email to PFT. “Rule 12, Section 3, Article 1 (d) states ‘players are prohibited from engaging in any celebrations or demonstrations while on the ground.’ However, the officiating mechanic in this situation is not to flag a player who goes to the ground as part of religious expression, and as a result, there should have been no penalty on the play.” Whatever the reason for the official’s misunderstanding of Abdullah’s intent, it is good to see the league act quickly to make it clear that the official and not Abdullah was in error.

    • Spirit of America October 5th, 2014 at 10:37 am

      I caught the highlight of the interception/runback… I thought it was real cool the way he slid into his ending of the prayer position, real neat & slick. My view.