Even if you are not a Cincinnati Bengals fan, this might be a good week to cheer for a Chad Ochocinco touchdown.
The man formerly known as Chad Johnson has blessed us with some of the greatest, most entertaining and at times cringe-worthy touchdown celebrations in NFL history. There was his rendition of Riverdance, the time he got down on one knee in front of a cheerleader, and his most recent tribute to Mexico when he donned a poncho and sombrero on the sideline.
But now Ochocinco could outdo himself. Instead of a corny, self-serving, look-at-me dance routine that could land him on "SportsCenter: for the umpteenth time, Ochocinco could hop into the hearts of millions and pay tribute to a fallen teammate at the same time.
The tragic and untimely passing of Cincinnati receiver Chris Henry could not have come at a worse time for the Bengals and their fans. It has cast another dark cloud over what has been such an outstanding season for the them. We should be talking about Cedric Benson’s chances at Comeback Player of the Year, Cincy’s stingy defense and the team’s chances of winning the AFC North and getting a first-round playoff bye.
Instead we have to discuss how Henry was taken from this world too soon, well before he could atone for all of his off-the-field errors and before he could reach his lofty on-the-field potential. Just when he was turning his life around and steering clear of trouble, this had to happen.
I sometimes lack faith in our government, the man upstairs and Nick Folk, to name a few. But if there is one person I have faith in when it comes to creating magic during touchdown time, it is Ochocinco. There is no doubt that if he is able to reach the end zone on Sunday against San Diego he will put on the most notable touchdown celebration of his career.
Maybe Ochocinco dons a Henry jersey in his late teammate’s honor. Let the NFL fine him for that, and if the league has the nerve, hopefully they will take Ochocinco’s money and put it towards a charity in Henry’s name, or sets up a trust fund for the children Henry left behind.
Ochocinco has never let us down before when it has come to his celebrations. Let’s hope his next one celebrates Chris Henry’s life.
Run and Shoot
Remember when everyone sounded the death knell for the New York Jets defense when All-Pro defensive tackle Kris Jenkins was knocked out for the remainder of the season with his knee injury? Many said the Jets wouldn’t be able to stop the run without their immovable monster in the middle.
Well, Rex Ryan is proving that he may know a thing or two about defense after all. After the Jets defense slumped though the middle portion of their schedule and had trouble stopping Miami’s "Wildcat" in one game and Jacksonville’s Maurice Jones-Drew and David Garrard in another loss, their unit has been lights out over the last three weeks.
The Jets have been a bully defense, dominating below-average offenses and stealing the lunch money of the erratic quarterbacks they have come across. They held Carolina to 179 yards (including just five yards for Steve Smith), Buffalo to 194 yards (including only 31 yards for Terrell Owens) and Tampa Bay to 124 yards (including 93 passing yards and three interceptions for Josh Freeman).
The Jets now have the No. 1 scoring defense, passing defense and total defense. Give Ryan, linebacker David Harris and Defensive Player of the Year candidate Darrelle Revis credit for keeping the team afloat despite devastating injuries and the devastating interceptions of Mark Sanchez.