NFL Suspends Linebacker 3 Games for Hit That ‘Could Have Been Avoided’

NFL Suspends Linebacker 3 Games for Hit That ‘Could Have Been Avoided’

For hitting an opponent in the head, the NFL is delivering its version of a timeout to Houston Texans linebacker Denzel Perryman.

The league has suspended Perryman for three games — without pay — over a tackle he made on Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase during Sunday’s win over the Bengals.

The hit drew an unnecessary roughness penalty, according to ESPN.

“You lowered your head and delivered a forcible blow to the shoulder and then the head/neck area of the receiver. You had [an] unobstructed path to your opponent and the illegal contact could have been avoided,” NFL Vice President of football operations Jon Runyan wrote in a letter to Perryman.

Perryman has six similar violations in his career, Runyan wrote.

One of those came in a Week 2 game against the Indianapolis Colts, for which Perryman was fined.


“When players violate the rules intended to protect player safety on a repeated basis, and particularly when the violations carry with them a significant risk of injury to an opposing player, it is appropriate to impose substantially greater penalties,” Runyan wrote.

In a post on X, former NFL star J.J. Watt called the logic flawed: “’six violations throughout his career’ He’s played in the league for 8 years! 6 penalties in 102 games means you deserve to be suspended 3 games without pay?”

Others agreed.

“I’ve spoken with Denzel. Tough conversation, and he knows it,” Texans coach DeMeco Ryans said on “The Pat McAfee Show.” “We hate to lose a good player. He’s a starting linebacker for us. We’ll just let the process play out. It’s real hard news to hear, but we’ll have our young guys stepping up, ready to go.”

Perryman has the option of appealing the suspension. He did not appear remorseful in a postgame social media post on Sunday.

“Save all the negative comments and remarks bout me and my coverage.. One minute they love you then they hate you.. Come show me how it’s done since everybody coverage experts lol.. Overall we got the W.. I love these guys,” he posted.

Perryman would miss upcoming games against the Arizona Cardinals, Jacksonville Jaguars and Denver Broncos.

Perryman has 41 tackles in this his first season with Houston.

Perryman was selected by the then-San Diego Chargers in the 2015 draft. He went to the Pro Bowl in 2021 after a season with the Las Vegas Raiders in which he logged 154 tackles, according to USA Today.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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