Quick Six will be safe Monday.
Edmonton receiver D’haquille (Duke) Williams has been very innovative this year regarding his post-touchdown celebrations. But should he score in the Eskimos’ contest against Calgary on Monday, he won’t be incorporating the Stampeders’ mascot in an elaborate end-zone skit.
Quick Six, a horse ridden by Chelsea Drake, charges down the sideline at McMahon Stadium after every Stampeders touchdown.
“That’s over the line,” Williams said. “I don’t know how to ride the horse.”
The colourful Williams received an objectionable conduct flag after he and two teammates crawled through an end zone advertising placard in Edmonton’s 40-24 home win over the Montreal Alouettes on Aug. 18.
The night before, Winnipeg receiver Darvin Adams celebrated after a 72-yard TD grab in the Bombers’ 44-21 home loss to Ottawa by taking a TV camera from a cameraman and filming his teammates as they came to congratulate him. There was no penalty on the play despite the CFL having a rule at the time that prohibited the use of props in touchdown celebrations.
The CFL quickly amended its TD celebration policy, allowing players to use props after scoring touchdowns so long as they weren’t hidden in their uniforms or the goalposts. The props also couldn’t be considered demeaning or discriminatory or simulate the firing of a weapon.
Under the new guidelines, Williams wouldn’t have been penalized for his actions against Montreal.
The game Monday is a big one for both teams. Calgary (8-1) sits atop the West Division, four points ahead of second-place Edmonton (6-4). But the Eskimos are just two points behind the Saskatchewan Roughriders (5-4) and Winnipeg Blue Bombers (5-5), who square off Sunday in Regina.
Calgary defensive back Jamar Wall offered a simple solution regarding Williams’ end-zone celebrations: Stop him from getting there in the first place.
“We’ve got to prevent him from getting there, I guess, right,” Wall said. “We don’t want to see it then we’ve got to keep him out of the end zone, it is what it is.
“I mean if he wants to go for (Quick Six), go for it. That’s a big animal, man.”
Williams has had plenty of opportunities to refine his TD celebrations this season. He’s the CFL’s leading receiver with 51 catches for 947 yards and seven touchdown passes from Edmonton starter Mike Reilly.
The six-foot-three, 225-pound Williams said he has nothing specific in mind should he score against Calgary. But if he does, Williams added he’ll react accordingly.
“I’m just ready to play, honestly,” he said. “It’s a big game and a lot of emotions are going to be flying.
“We’re going to have fun in the end zone, it’s a party in the end zone everywhere we play.”
But the six-foot-three, 225-pound Williams said his celebrations aren’t meant to demean or make fun of opposing defences.
“We’re just trying to have fun in the end zone because nobody sees what we do in practice, nobody watches us practise all the time and the hard work we put in. The game is supposed to be fun,” Williams said.
“Whenever I score I just let all of my emotions out and just come up with stuff off the top of my head to try to get the fans into it as well. That’s all it is, it’s entertainment and just having fun with it. Once you stop having fun with it, then you start questioning yourself and start questioning if you even want to play ball anymore. It’s all fun and games at the end of the day.”