Before the 1988 season, which would be the last time the Bengals played in the Super Bowl, the Cincinnati Bengals, still being led by founder Paul Brown and coached by Sam Wyche, decided to select UNLV fullback Elbert "Ickey" Woods with their second-round pick in the draft. That season, Woods led the Bengals rushing attack with 1,066 yards and 15 touchdowns. After everyone of those 15 touchdowns, Woods performed the famous Ickey Shuffle. If you don't know what the Ickey Shuffle looks like, here you go:
End zone celebrations have changed since then. Now players need props like cell phones, sharpies, signs or bags of gifts. It's changed so much that Woods decided to speak out about it while being interviewed by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Woods, one of the original end zone dancers, doesn't want the new celebrations to be compared to his.
"The entertainment or the things that they’re doing now is more me-oriented," Woods told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. "They’re geared more for the player than the fans. My thing was geared toward the fans. I never did it on the road. I always did it at home. It was something for our fans to enjoy, something to keep "The Jungle" rocking. Guys now, I think they’re more into me-me with the Sharpie, the cellphone."
"I wasn’t out to taunt anybody," Woods said. "I was just out to have fun and let our fans have fun."
Woods career was cut short by knee injuries, causing the running back to retire by the age of 26. However, in that short, four-year career, Woods rushed 1,525 yards and 27 touchdowns. The Bengals would have to wait for a whole decade before they got another end zone celebrator: Chad Johnson (now Ochocinco), drafted in 2001. And, of course, it seems that Ochocinco's best end zone dancing days are behind him.
Will the Bengals need to wait another decade before they get another end zone entertainer or will they find one this year?