Vikings Pro Bowl defender credited for 'tush push' creation

Did Minnesota Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr come up with the "Tush Push" play?
Minnesota Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr
Minnesota Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr / Jonathan Bachman/GettyImages

Minnesota Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr was recently credited with the initial thought of the "tush push" play made famous by the Philadelphia Eagles.

When someone mentions the "tush push" play in the NFL, the Philadelphia Eagles are typically what most people think of first. But recently, it was revealed that current Minnesota Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr might have had the initial idea for the play that has been made famous (or infamous, depending on who you ask) by the Eagles.

NFL Flims recently released a feature online about the "tush push" play and where it potentially originated. While Philadelphia head coach Nick Sirianni is credited with the actual implementation of the play out on the field, a hot mic in 2018 apparently picked up Barr suggesting to his Vikings teammates that offenses around the league should run a quarterback sneak that utilizes other players pushing the signal-caller from behind.

The "tush push" is the result of Minnesota Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr always looking for an advantage

During the early part of the feature from NFL Films, Barr shares how he's constantly thinking of ways to give his team the advantage over an opponent.

"The wheels are always spinning. Whether it's seven in the morning brushing my teeth or midnight right before bed, I'm thinking of ways to hopefully give our team the advantage."

Currently, the "tush push" is a play that is not banned by the NFL. The league does not allow offensive players to pull a teammate forward to gain yards, as that would be penalized for assisting the runner. However, the NFL is totally fine (for now) with offensive players pushing their teammates forward to gain more yards.

It's a bit odd that pushing a teammate forward isn't considered assisting the runner, but pulling a teammate forward is. For now, however, the Eagles have been taking full advantage of the current legality of the "tush push" play.

Will the play continue to be allowed after the 2023 season? It's possible, but it won't come as a surprise if banning the "tush push" play is something that is voted on by NFL owners during the 2024 offseason.