The Lions are no strangers to being accused of dirty play. In particular, many players around the league have said that Ndamukong Suh plays dirty after the whistle and tries to injure people. When you see plays like this one it’s tough to defend Suh, but according to the Niners Suh isn’t the only problem.
“I think it was key for our front offensive line to handle it tonight because they like to be cheap after the play and they think that makes them physical,” tackle Joe Staley said after the game, via MLive.com.
Vernon Davis had to sit out briefly at one point during the Niners win after being poked in the eye, and he says he’s not sure if the poke was intentional or an accident.
“I got poked in my eyes,” Davis said. “Since I got poked I had to sit down. I do not know if it was intentional by (Cliff) Avril. I am just not sure.”
There was also a missed unnecessary roughness penalty that should have been called after Alex Smith ran for a first down and went into a slide. A Detroit player came diving in at Smith as he slid and gave him a pretty hard shot to the head, which is the reason you could see blood running down the bridge of Smith’s nose for the remainder of the game. Even if the hit wasn’t late — which it seemed like it was — it should have been called a blow to the head.
“I looked up, saw the flag and thought for sure it was a personal foul call, but all of a sudden we were backed up and it was a holding call,” Smith said. “I was pretty stunned we didn’t get that call.”
Jim Harbaugh called the Lions a “chippy bunch” prior to the game but avoided the subject afterword. At the end of the day, the Niners won the game and continued to look like the best team in the NFC. Should the two teams meet in the postseason, things may get a bit more interesting.
Helmet knock to Pro Football Talk
Photo credit: John David Mercer-US PRESSWIRE