The Cat Is on the Field

New York Giants fans do not see things running into the end zone as often as they would like, so they’ll take what they can get.

A black cat ran onto the field during a Monday Night Football game at MetLife Stadium, flummoxing would-be corrallers as it danced along the goal line and, eventually, darted into the end zone to the wild cheers of the crowd.

At first, the cat seemed unsure of its red-zone approach. With 5:32 left in the second quarter, it appeared on the 8-yard line, bringing the arguably less interesting contest against the Dallas Cowboys to a halt. It scurried to the 5, then to the 2, pausing as if waiting for the referee to set the ball for the next play.

With a flair for the dramatic, it stopped just inches from the goal line. Would it stop short of pay dirt? Would this be yet another disappointment at a Giants home game?

It would not — the cat delivered. In a flash, it took off into a full sprint, galloping triumphantly into the end zone. The crowd went wild, both in the stadium and in homes across the nation.

“The cat runs into the end zone! That is a touchdown!” Kevin Harlan announced on Westwood One radio.

“He’s got great lateral movement,” declared Joe Tessitore, an ESPN announcer.

State troopers and stadium workers chased the cat behind the end zone, and it went about as well as you’d expect. Less than a minute later, it ran through a tunnel and exited the field, forcing everyone to watch football again.

There is a storied history of animals interrupting sports games and bringing everyone joy. Football has historically been vulnerable to squirrel breaks, including one critter that became beloved in Green Bay in 2016.

Cats have appeared on baseball diamonds on several occasions, including one that scampered through the outfield of a Miami Marlins game in 2017, evading capture for a delightful amount of time.

Sadly, not all animal-sports intersections turn out well. R.I.P. to the bird that famously collided with a Randy Johnson fastball in 2001.