Ezekiel Elliott was trying to draw attention to a worthy charity when he jumped into the giant plastic Salvation Army kettle after scoring a touchdown for the Cowboys on Sunday night.
Attention came in droves -- there was outrage about the NFL potentially fining the running back and a promise from Elliott to match any fine with a donation. The league declined to fine the Cowboys running back and Elliott is donating anyway.
But the real benefit came via the form of the surge in donations to the Salvation Army from people who were watching and paying attention on social media.
According to Darren Rovell of ESPN, the Salvation Army saw a massive boost in donations.
In the roughly 12 1/2 hours after Elliott's jump, until 10:30 a.m. ET on Monday morning, the Salvation Army took in $182,000 in online donations, said Lt. Col. Ron Busroe.
That bump is a whopping 61 percent increase over the previous week's donations for the Salvation Army in its Red Kettle campaign.
Additionally, Rovell reports the Salvation Army received $4 million worth of exposure in equivalent advertising as a result of Elliott's kettle jump.
The move immediately went viral, and drew a flag from the refs for excessive celebration. Of course.
"We needed this boost," Busroe said.
They can thank a combination of Elliott's enthusiasm, social media and the NFL's arcane celebration rules somehow managing to help things out.