Updated: Nov 10, 2020
(Screengrab from NFL on ESPN on Twitter)
JuJu Smith-Schuster mimicked Terrell Owens' infamous star celebration after a 31-yard touchdown reception in the fourth quarter against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday, but it didn't entirely go to plan.
During the broadcast, Smith-Schuster was seen running toward the middle of the field with the ball in his hand after the score when Cowboys' defensive end Randy Gregory smacked it out of his hands. Gregory was called for a personal foul for the act.
The Cowboys had a feeling that Smith-Schuster had a star celebration up his sleeve.
“Absolutely,” defensive tackle Antwaun Woods told Clarence Hill of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “I saw a video before the game that had him on the star. I knew that was something he might do. I was going to make sure he didn’t get there. We have zero-tolerance for that.”
Instead of doing the celebration on the star in the middle of the field, Smith-Schuster settled for doing it near the Steelers sideline. Smith-Schuster said James Conner stopped him from doing it on the star because he didn't want the team to be penalized or a fight breaking out.
"Yeah for the celebration I was going to do the T.O. star celebration," Smith-Schuster said after the game. "Ninty-four (Gregory) knocked the ball out of my hands, probably would have tackled me. James Conner came over and pulled me over and was like it's a close game. You just never know what will happen and I didn't want to start anything. But if it was a far, far blowout game, I definitely will do that someday."
Owens on Twitter approved of Smith-Schuster's effort to reenact the star celebration that Owens did against the Cowboys in 2000.
When Owens did the celebration, the 49ers were leading 40-17 in the fourth quarter. The Steelers were down 19-15 early in the fourth quarter when Smith-Schuster tried to do it. Pittsburgh ultimately ended up beating Dallas, 24-19.