In 2016 when he was a rookie and playing in his first Dallas Cowboys Thanksgiving game, Ezekiel Elliott scored a touchdown and jumped into the giant red Salvation Army kettle behind the end zone to celebrate.
Though that was BC — Before (NFL-Legal) Celebration — Elliott wasn’t fined by the league.
This year, he’s playing in another Thanksgiving game, and found a slightly different way to celebrate a score in Dallas’ 31-23 victory against Washington.
Money in the bucket
Elliott scored on a 16-yard run five minutes into the game, putting Dallas up 7-0 on divisional rival Washington.
After scoring, he looked for one person in particular, a man who was wearing one of the vests photographers allowed to be on the sidelines wear, and that man gave Elliott some money.
Elliott held it up to the camera – it appeared to be a $20 and a $1, $21 presumably because Elliott wears No. 21 – and then threw it into the red bucket.
What happened if he didn’t score?
Good on Elliott for making the donation (yeah, yeah, you think it could have been more … he didn’t have to donate at all, and let’s be honest, it was a stunt), and for planning ahead with the photographer, who is likely a team employee.
One question: If Elliott hadn’t scored, did he have to return the money to the running back?
Back to the bucket
Eventually, a jubilant Cowboys player did find his way into the bucket. Just not Elliott. When Dak Prescott scrambled for a late touchdown to extend Dallas’ lead to 31-13, Elliott gave his quarterback a helping hand into the bucket.
The move ended up costing the Cowboys 15 yards, but at that point, nobody seemed to care.
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