NFL Officiating Pontiff Hath Forsaken The Raiders

Last Sunday Raiders cornerback Chris Johnson was flagged for excessive celebration after intercepting a pass against the Texans. His crime, per the David White of the SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE:

Chris Johnson Religious Celebration Allowed By VP Of NFL Officiating Mike Pereira

(Blurriness adds to the drama, no?)

Falling on bended knee and lifting his hands toward the unretracted roof after his end-zone interception just before halftime. The back judge deemed it excessive celebrating and threw his flag. “I’m just getting on my knees giving my respect to God,” Johnson said. “I don’t see how that’s a personal foul or anything like that.

Follow: “Chris Johnson gave the same thanks after his three other career interceptions, all last season, and was not flagged.

Okay, now for the fun part, thanks to Yardbarker blogger Alana G.

Mike Pereira, the NFL’s current VP of Officiating, on NFL Network visiting with Rich Eisen on September 10, 2009:


There’s only going to be one time you’re going to be allowed to go one your knees … and that’s when you want to praise The Lord. If you do that, then I’m going to allow that because I do not want to be struck by lightning.

Do I detect a modicum of inconsistency in the application of the excessive celebration rule as it pertains to the Raiders?

( … Carry on, your Excellency.)