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Duck, duck, goose? Vikings not about to duck out of TD celebration

Minnesota Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph (82) celebrates with teammates after scoring touchdown against the Chicago Bears in the second half at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota Vikings wide receivers Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs sat in front of their lockers Monday night, Oct. 9, and debated the name of the game.

Neither player would budge.

"It's called duck, duck, gray duck," said Thielen, a Detroit Lakes, Minn., who claimed the title was popular up north.

"What is gray duck?" Diggs said with a look of disbelief on his face. "It's duck, duck, goose."

Either way, Minnesota's touchdown celebration was a hit on social media during the team's 20-17 win over the Chicago Bears. After Vikings quarterback Case Keenum found Kyle Rudolph for a 13-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter, most of the offense sat in a circle while Rudolph walked around the group.

He tapped Keenum's helmet. Duck ...

He tapped right guard Joe Berger's helmet. Duck ...

He tapped center Pat Elflein's helmet. Goose! (Or gray duck.)

"I had no idea it was happening," said Elflein, who guessed that he last played the game when he was in kindergarten. "I just saw everyone sit down, so I ran up and sat down next to them. They started tapping, so I figured it was duck, duck, goose. I was the goose, so I just (bleeping) got up and started running."

The idea belonged to Rudolph, who had a hunch that a Vikings touchdown was coming and told his teammates in the huddle about his proposed celebration.

"I said, 'Look, when we score here, whoever scores, you're the duck,'" Rudolph said. "Everybody else, sit down in a circle, and we'll have some fun. Case made a great play and found me on the scramble drill.

"I turned around and it was probably one of the best sights I've ever seen in sports. Pat Elflein and Mike Remmers and Joe Berger are just flying at me to grab a seat in the end zone. We played for a little while, and of course I picked one of the linemen as the goose."

Or the gray duck. Thielen said the Minnesota version of the game added another layer of strategy because participants could exclaim "purple duck" or "yellow duck" to try to oust people sitting in the circle who were not listening for the proper "gray duck."

Teammates were not convinced.

"I've never heard of gray duck," Keenum said with a grin. "What exactly is a gray duck? I've duck-hunted before. I've never heard, 'Oh, there's a gray duck.'"

On one point, Vikings players agreed. They said the NFL did the right thing before the season by relaxing its long-stringent rules on end-zone celebrations.

"I think it's cool to do things like that," Thielen said with a grin. "It's kid-friendly, and we're having fun with it. It's a kid's game that we're playing, so why not have fun and do the things that make you happy?"