[Ads-l] Take a knee

Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at GMAIL.COM
Sun Dec 24 10:23:12 EST 2017

All of this is discussed in the Language Log post I linked to upthread.

Beginning in the '90s, "taking a knee" or "taking the knee" often referred
to the "quarterback kneel," where the quarterback on the winning team runs
out the clock by kneeling after the snap — either to protect a small lead
or as a show of sportsmanship with a larger lead.

[linking to: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quarterback_kneel ]

On Sun, Dec 24, 2017 at 8:18 AM, Dennis During <dcduring at gmail.com> wrote:

> On Sun, Dec 24, 2017 at 12:50 AM, Wilson Gray <hwgray at gmail.com> wrote:
> > ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> > -----------------------
> > Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> > Poster:       Wilson Gray <hwgray at GMAIL.COM>
> > Subject:      Re: Take a knee
> > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > -------------------
> >
> > Wasn't there once a time when there was only a trivial amount of time
> left
> > and the winning team had the ball and, though, officially, there was time
> > left for one more play, running that play would be pointless? So, the
> > winning team would go into the spread formation, the ball would be
> snapped
> > and the quarterback, instead of trying needlessly to run a useless play,
> > would simply "take a knee" - i.e. drop to one knee - thereby ending the
> > play and, consequently, the game.
> >
> > ​There indeed once was and still is such a time. The practice and the use
> of the expression "take a knee" by sportscasters​ probably can be observed
> and heard today on football broadcasts.

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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