The Thrill and the AgonyThis week in sports by Chas Walker

Horn on the horn

It is a “cell-abration” that few will forget. After his second of four touchdown receptions in Sunday’s 45-7 victory over the New York Giants, New Orleans Saints’ wide receiver Joe Horn rushed over to the goalpost and whipped out a cell phone he had planted prior to the game to make a call.

Horn claims that he called his mother and children, but a more likely scenario is that he was just calling for some media attention. Horn is one of those athletes who refer to themselves eerily in the third person during interviews and public appearances. It’s as if Joe Horn needed to constantly hear Joe Horn’s named being mentioned, and since the press does not do it, then Joe Horn must.

In all fairness, Horn is having the best season of his 8-year career, with 10 total touchdown receptions, nearly 1,000 receiving yards, and an average of 12.3 yards per catch so far, but he has complained to the press that no one pays any attention. Hmm.

Perhaps that is because the Saints are 7 and 7 and have only a remote chance of making the playoffs?

Horn’s showmanship one-ups San Francisco’s Terrell Owens, who last year kept a felt marker in his sock until he scored – then whipped it out, autographed the ball, and handed it to his financial consultant. After Owens’ stunt, NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue sent a memo to all teams warning them that other such acts would be punished.

Jim Haslett, the Saints’ coach, was not pleased by Horn’s show, as it resulted in a 15-yard penalty, giving the Giants great field position. It remains to be seen how the NFL will react, but insiders are guessing that Horn will be fined tens of thousands of dollars.

And I thought that I got charged too much for using my cell phone.

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