Terrell Owens' misguided attempt to light a fire under the San Francisco 49ers has landed him in hot water.
After embarrassing some of his teammates with two flamboyant touchdown celebrations during the 49ers' victory at Dallas, Owens was fined a week's salary and suspended for a game by coach Steve Mariucci on Monday.
After both of his touchdowns in the 41-24 victory at Texas Stadium, Owens sprinted to midfield and celebrated on the Cowboys' star logo. His second trip to midfield sparked the ire of Cowboys safety George Teague, who leveled Owens and sparked a heated confrontation.
"This decision is based on how we intend to conduct ourselves," Mariucci said. "It disturbs me when the integrity of the game is compromised in any way, shape or form."
Owens will lose $24,294 and won't be allowed to practice or meet with his teammates this week. San Francisco (1-3) plays host to Arizona on Sunday.
After the game, Owens said he was only trying to spark his team to victory -- an explanation that some, including Mariucci, found hard to believe. Mariucci said he spoke to the league office about his decision to discipline Owens, and the NFL isn't expected to level its own fine or suspension.
Owens, who was told of the punishment in a meeting with Mariucci earlier Monday, left the Bay area to visit his ailing grandmother in Alexander City, Ala.
"He's going home for a couple days to get away from the furor," said his agent, David Joseph.
Owens remained unapologetic in a statement released through Joseph. However, he said he didn't mean to offend anyone and intended only to fire up his team.
"I feel badly that my celebratory actions during the 49ers-Cowboys game this past Sunday have detracted from what was a great team victory over the Cowboys," Owens' statement read. "As most of you know, I am an intense and emotional player who is driven to succeed. I also want to make clear that my actions were not intended to taunt or insult the Dallas Cowboys organization. Rather, I was simply trying to provide my team with a positive spark."
On Sunday, Emmitt Smith responded to Owens' first outburst with his own midfield celebration after a 1-yard TD just before halftime.
When Owens caught a 1-yard TD pass with 4:05 left to make it 41-17, he again took off toward midfield. Teague followed Owens and knocked him down as he kneeled on the logo.
Teague was ejected, while Owens received a penalty for taunting but was not ejected. The win was the 49ers' first after three losses.
Teague is anticipating a fine from the NFL. So is safety Darren Woodson, who was ejected in the fourth quarter for arguing with the officials.