NFL determined Michael Bennett dove for ball, not Jags player’s knees
The NFL made the surprising decision this week to not suspend any players who were involved in an ugly ending to the Seahawks-Jaguars game, and the league’s explanation for letting Michael Bennett off the hook may be the most mind-boggling.
Bennett was basically responsible for igniting a scrum between the two teams, as he chose to roll into a Jaguars offensive lineman’s knees with Jacksonville leading 30-24 and in the victory formation. When Brandon Linder climbed over Bennett and gave him a little shove following the cheap shot, Bennett then dove at the back of Linder’s knees.
Here’s a video:
Here's the video of Bennett diving into the centers legs. pic.twitter.com/Hmx0gSew9S
— The 617 Report (@617Report) December 11, 2017
In an appearance on “NFL Live” Tuesday, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that NFL officials believed Bennett was going for the ball and did not intentionally try to take out Linder’s knees. That seems awfully lenient.
A cheap shot is a cheap shot, and diving toward the ball or an opponent’s knees while a team is in the victory formation is dangerous. Even if the NFL couldn’t justify suspending Bennett for that, they could have used his ensuing dive at the back of Linder’s knees to solidify their case.
You can almost understand why Seahawks defensive lineman Quinton Jefferson won’t be facing a suspension, as no player deserves to have objects thrown at him by fans. Bennett seems to be the most fortunate in this situation.