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CeeDee Lamb’s disappointment turns to joy, whack-a-mole celebration for Cowboys tight ends

The Cowboys’ Salvation Army celebration got a makeover against the Giants.

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Dallas Cowboys' Peyton Hendershot (89) celebrates with Sean McKeon (84), Jake Ferguson (87) and Dalton Schultz after scoring a touchdown against the New York Giants during the second half of an NFL football game Thursday, Nov. 24, 2022, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

Disappointment for CeeDee Lamb turned to joy for Cowboys tight ends during Thursday’s Thanksgiving win against the New York Giants.

Lamb thought he caught a tremendous one-handed touchdown in the back of the end zone to give the Cowboys a 28-13 fourth-quarter lead. But officials ruled that his left heel landed out of bounds in the back of the end zone, nullifying the spectacular first-down play.

No matter. Peyton Hendershot made up for it on the next play while adding a new twist to a Cowboys Thanksgiving tradition. On second-and-goal at the 2-yard line, Dallas sent out four tight ends for the goal-line play. Dak Prescott handed off to Hendershot on a misdirection play and Hendershot ran in untouched off left tackle for the score. He made a beeline for the Salvation Army kettle behind the end zone.

He was joined by fellow Cowboys tight ends Dalton Schultz, Sean McKeon and Jake Ferguson, who all hopped in the kettle. Hendershot remained outside the kettle and proceeded to play a game of whack-a-mole where the football was the hammer and his teammates were the moles.

It was a next-level iteration of a celebration that’s became a Thanksgiving tradition in Dallas. Ezekiel Elliott got the party started in 2016 when he hopped in the kettle to celebrate a touchdown. He ran the celebration back in 2018 by placing cash and Prescott in the bucket afters scores. These celebrations drew the ire of the NFL, which fined Elliott $13,369 for unsportsmanlike conduct.

This has not swayed the Cowboys from keeping up with the celebration while highlighting the charity. Team owner Jerry Jones is in full support of the tradition and has offered in the past to cover any fines levied for the celebration. Here’s guessing he’s got his tight ends covered in case the NFL frowns on Thursday’s celebration.

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