Jim Wyatt, SENIOR WRITER/EDITOR
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Mike Vrabel didn’t like Titans safety Kevin Byard celebrating in the star at Dallas on Monday night, and after speaking with his head coach, Byard gets the point.
Byard’s actions after his first quarter interception in Monday’s win drew a wide range of opinions.
“Some people loved it, some didn’t,” Byard said on Wednesday, “but the main thing is the head coach didn’t like it, and that’s the most important thing. I am more concerned with the trust and the way my head coach and my teammates view me. Those guys know that I am not a selfish person, and I understand that act looked selfish and that’s why we had a talk about that.
“I don’t want to be in the doghouse, or end up in the doghouse over a celebration. But we’re good. We’re good.”
Byard celebrated the end zone interception by running into the middle of the star at AT&T Stadium – reminiscent of Hall of Fame receiver Terrell Owens and his celebration on the star 18 years ago when he played for the 49ers, against the Cowboys. Once there, Byard did a little dance, and some of his teammates joined in.
While his teammates seemed to love it, Vrabel didn’t. He talked to Byard about it immediately after the game, and the two have spoken about it again since.
“I’m not (happy), and I won’t be,” Vrabel told reporters on Tuesday. “That’s not what we want as an organization, and that’s not what I want as a head coach. I want our guys to play as hard as they possibly can for each other, between the whistle, and as physical and aggressive and as clean as they possibly can.
“… Once the whistle blows, celebrate with a teammate, find somebody else in a Titans uniform. Find a coach, and celebrate with them. But we don’t need to do that. It’s not what we want to do. I’ve talked to Kevin this morning, I’ll talk to the team again tomorrow and that goes for a lot of guys. That’s not what I want, and if that’s what they want, then we see it very differently.”
Byard said he thought about the celebration in advance.
Next time, he’ll think twice, he said.
“It’s something I thought about before that was going to be kind of fun, to get the sideline riled up a little bit,” Byard said. “But at the end of the day, next time for sure I am going to go find my teammates, maybe find Logan Ryan, who helped me make that play, and celebrate with him first.”