Seahawks’ Richard Sherman, Michael Bennett have no issue with Cam Newton’s celebrations

Jan 15, 2016, 5:42 PM | Updated: 5:46 pm
Panthers quarterback Cam Newton’s celebrations have caused considerable controversy this seas...
Panthers quarterback Cam Newton's celebrations have caused considerable controversy this season. (AP)
(AP)

RENTON – If you don’t like it, don’t let it happen.

That was the crux of the point that Seahawks defensive lineman Michael Bennett made while saying he doesn’t mind the way Panthers quarterback Cam Newton celebrates after touchdowns and other big plays, a topic Bennett was asked about with Seattle and Carolina set to play Sunday.

“If you want somebody not to do something, you’ve just got to stop them,” Bennett said. “If you hold a team to zero points then you don’t see any dancing, but if they’re winning and you can’t stop them, the more they should do that. They should rub it in. It’ll make you want to play harder. More people worry about them dancing than stopping them.”

Dancing is only one way in which Newton likes to celebrate, something he did a whole lot of this season as Carolina led the league in scoring. He’ll pretend to tear open a shirt to reveal an “S” on his chest – a play on his Superman moniker – and point emphatically down the field after running for a first down.

It was a dance move – the “Dab”, which originated in Newton’s hometown of Atlanta – that he went to following a rushing touchdown against Tennessee in Nashville earlier this season. A Titans defender took exception. Newton kept dancing.

“When Cam made that point, I thought he made a good point,” Bennett said. “I think if you don’t want a guy dancing in the end zone, it’s real simple: don’t let him get to the end zone. I think that’s what you have to do when you’re playing against this team.”

Bennett has his own celebration, which he breaks out following sacks. So do a great deal of other players. That it only seems to be an issue to some that Newton celebrates perhaps speaks to the behavior that has come to be expected of quarterbacks, whether that’s fair or not.

“You get to the end zone in an NFL game you deserve the right to celebrate,” Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman said. “I mean, you’ve worked hard, you’re a professional athlete. If you don’t get to celebrate in the pros, when do you get to celebrate? When do you get to show what you can do to enjoy yourself? I mean, this is a game.

“I think some people who’ve never played it, who’ve never expressed passion, sit behind desks all day and do that. Maybe you celebrate sometimes when you do something great, and nobody judges you because nobody’s watching. But as you’re watching him, enjoy it. He’s enjoying it, he can enjoy his craft. If he wants to celebrate, that’s fine.”

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Seahawks’ Richard Sherman, Michael Bennett have no issue with Cam Newton’s celebrations