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“A cheap one”: Whiff of QB flagged for 15



Week 4: Ravens at Patriots

First, there is no video of the play in question online, only the postgame reaction by the Ravens’ Ray Lewis.

Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs was flagged for low contact with Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. Brady’s brief 2008 season—cut short due to a knee injury in the season opener—no doubt prompted extra scrutiny on low hits for all quarterbacks. However, Suggs barely contacted Brady and was, in fact, blocked into Brady’s path. Under the rule that is not a penalty. This is under the responsibility of the referee; for this game, it was Ron Winter.

Lewis’s comments as reported by The Baltimore Sun:

That’s embarrassing to our game … Fine me, do whatever you please, I’m not speaking against anybody. It’s embarrassing for them to treat one person on a football field different from anybody else. That’s what’s embarrassing about this game. You cannot do that. You’ve got to let the game take care of itself like it just did. But when you call penalties like that, it takes away from the love of the game because you can get a Tom Brady to walk by you and say something like, “Oh, that’s a cheap one.” Wow.

There is speculation that Lewis will be fined for his comments. While it’s a high-profile grievance, he did not (at least in the excerpts we have found) complain about the call, but the rule.

Ben Austro is the editor and founder of Football Zebras and the author of So You Think You Know Football?: The Armchair Ref's Guide to the Official Rules (on sale now)