Brandon Meriweather Just Doesn’t Get It

Washington Redskins safety Brandon Meriweather—who, mind you, has only played in 5 games so far in 2013—has already been fined over $100k this season, and was forced to sit Sunday’s game against the Denver Broncos for a pair of illegal hits in the team’s game against the Chicago Bears. (That suspension was reduced from 2 games to just 1 after an expedited appeals process last week.)

Meriweather, who’s quite possibly one of the game’s dirtiest players, spoke with the media on Monday and voiced his displeasure at the fines and the reactions of the people he hit. Per Chris Russell of ESPN 980 in DC:

Hand-to-forehead.

Meriweather wasn’t done, though. He went on to criticize Brandon Marshall, the guy he launched himself at to get himself into this mess in the first second third fourth however-many-times-he’s-done-this place. Some context to this next quote: Marshall said guys like Meriweather might deserve to be suspended or removed from the game altogether.

“He feels like I need to be kicked out of the league, I feel like people who beat their girlfriends should be kicked out of the league, too,” Meriweather said, according to ESPN (Marshall has a bit of a history, getting himself locked up several times on alleged domestic-abuse charges). “You tell me who you’d rather have? Someone who plays aggressive on the field or someone who beat up their girlfriend?”

I’m not going to touch that second comment (just thought it was something juicy that you might enjoy 🙂 ), but I would like to go back to what he said about having to change his style of tackling. See, tearing ACLs and ending careers isn’t going to cut it either, my friend. Especially when you come out and say that’s what you intend to do (no money is changing hands, but this screams Bountygate). But let’s take a quick dive into the depths of the NFL’s rule book for a hot minute. Two things I’d like to shed some light on for you, Brandon.

  1. Rule 12, Section 2, Article 6, Part (i) states “using any part of a player’s helmet (including the top/crown and forehead/ hairline‖ parts) or facemask to butt, spear, or ram an opponent violently or unnecessarily” shall be considered unnecessary roughness. This includes any part of the body, not just the head—so knees are out. And spearing with the crown of the helmet is what you’re known for.
  2. Rule 12, Section 2, Article 7 (The Defenseless Players), Part (b), Number (2) states that prohibited contact against a player who is in a defenseless posture is “Lowering the head and making forcible contact with the top/crown or forehead/‖hairline‖ parts of the helmet against any part of the defenseless player’s body,” or, Number (3), “Illegally launching into a defenseless opponent.” Again, the essence of how you play the game.

So forget about the knees, you idiot. Worry about going out there, keeping your head up, both feet on the ground, and making a clean tackle. Roughly 2,000 clean tackles are made every week, and a healthy portion of them go unfined. Everyone else seems to be able to adjust to these new rules that make it impossible to play defense. Time for you to do the same.

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