"They're not going to stop me."
New Orleans Saints wide receiver Brandin Cooks has vowed to keep doing his bow and arrow "Archer" celebration, despite the fact that the NFL is cracking down on the gesture. According to the NFL's head of officiating Dean Blandino, the bow and arrow celebration "mimics a violent act" and players who do it can expect to be fined, just like the Redskins' Josh Norman who did a similar celebration a few weeks ago.
Cooks' fantasy owners will tell you that he hasn't had much of an opportunity to bust out his patented "Archer" celebration in recent weeks, but when that time comes he isn't going to let the NFL's ruling affect his decision to do it anyway.
"Well, there are different forms of doing it. You just can't shoot [the arrow]," Cooks told NOLA.com. "I'm still going to pull it out. Whatever happens after that happens. I don't want to do anything to jeopardize my team, but I'll figure something out."
"It's one of those things that they want to fine anything and get their little ... whatever they want. They're not going to stop me."
Cooks, who has never been fined for this type of celebration, said it's something that he's been doing for years, and explained that he got the idea from a Bible passage in which a boy named Ishmael used his archery skill to survive in the desert.
"Send forth lightning and scatter your enemy, and shoot your arrows and rout them," Cooks said. "I just remember it sticking with me for such a long time, I remember thinking, maybe I can do something with this."
"I've been doing it for three years now, and there was never a complaint about it," Cooks told The New Orleans Advocate. "Now, all of a sudden, there is. It just reminds me that, it's almost as if they try to take so much away from us, but for something like this, that means so much to someone that has nothing to do with violence, it's frustrating. I'll definitely continue to speak my opinion about it, and if they have a problem with it, so be it."
Whether it's inspired by a Bible passage or not, the NFL isn't happy with the bow and arrow trend and players who choose to celebrate with this will now be hit with a penalty as well as a fine.
And remember, players are not penalized for punting or throwing the ball into the 18th row of the stadium.