Mike McCarthy defends La’el Collins over ejection
Most head coaches would probably be aggravated if a key member of their offensive line gets ejected. That is not true of Dallas Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy, at least under Sunday’s circumstances.
During Sunday’s game against the Washington Football Team, Dallas quarterback Dak Prescott was shoved out of bounds late by Washington’s William Bradley-King when Prescott appeared to be giving himself up already. That did not sit well with Cowboys offensive lineman La’el Collins, who rushed over and threw a couple punches at Bradley-King in defense of his quarterback.
Love this from La’el Collins ✭ defending his QB. pic.twitter.com/SMn5EPe0OR
— DC (@DylansRawTake) December 12, 2021
Collins was ejected, but McCarthy made clear after the game that he wanted to see Collins defend his quarterback that way.
“LC did exactly what you’re supposed to do there,” McCarthy said, via Charean Williams of Pro Football Talk.
McCarthy returned to the podium later and made clear he did not condone Collins’ punch, but was simply defending the idea of defending the quarterback.
Mike McCarthy returned to the lectern after walking away in order to clarify this statement. “I didn’t realize there was a punch thrown.” RT La’el Collins’ instinct and general action to defend Dak Prescott was right. Just not the punch that got him ejected.
— Michael Gehlken (@GehlkenNFL) December 12, 2021
It’s worth remembering that when then-Dallas QB Andy Dalton took a headshot from Washington’s Jon Bostic last year, the Cowboys did nothing to stand up for their quarterback. McCarthy publicly criticized the team for that. He might not necessarily want to see his players punching opponents, but Collins sending a message is precisely what McCarthy said his team did not do last season.
Photo: Oct 3, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; Dallas Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy on the field before the game against the New York Giants at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports