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Michael Thomas dials up celebration to Saints' past after clinching touchdown against Rams

Michael Thomas dials up celebration to Saints' past after clinching touchdown against Rams
New Orleans Saints' Michael Thomas runs for a touchdown during the fourth quarter against the Rams on Sunday. (Gregory Shamus / Getty Images)

After the touchdown throw, a throwback.

In a nod to a New Orleans receiver of yesteryear, Saints wideout Michael Thomas celebrated his 72-yard touchdown catch Sunday by fishing a cellphone from the base of the goalpost pad and pretending to make a call. It was a celebration Joe Horn famously performed 15 years earlier.

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"You got to have fun," said Thomas, who had stashed the phone there and was flagged for a 15-yard penalty enforced on the ensuing kickoff. "All these guys are catching touchdowns and celebrating and having fun and getting the crowd involved. I felt like I had an opportunity to make it happen, put the game away and make the call."

The Saints couldn’t have been too angry, as it punctuated a tremendous day for Thomas, who attended Taft High in Woodland Hills and is a nephew of former USC and NFL receiver Keyshawn Johnson. Thomas, who had 12 catches, set a Saints single-game record with 211 receiving yards.

"I wasn’t all fired up about the penalty," Saints coach Sean Payton said. "We’ll get that figured out and handled, but he had a good game."

Horn, who played for the Saints from 2000-06 and still ranks as the third-leading receiver in club history, was touched by the celebration.

"When I saw him bring out that cellphone, I teared up," Horn told Jeff Duncan of the New Orleans Times-Picayune, who reached him by phone after the game. "That’s something that some kids don’t do, to pay homage to an old soul. For him to do it on a national stage took a lot of courage. When I saw him bring out that cellphone, I teared up. I’m humbled."

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