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Buccaneers receiver Mike Evans did not escape suspension as he was told to sit out one game after Sunday’s fight during the game against the New Orleans Saints.
The suspension did not make any sense considering that the league did not impose any sanction on A.J. Green for choking, throwing to the ground and punching Jalen Ramsey also on Sunday. The league did not issue an explanation from the seemingly double standard.
Jon Runyan, NFL vice President of football operations, said that Evans violated the NFL rule on unsportsmanlike conduct such as punching, kicking and using a forearm to attack the opponent. Evans wasn’t part of the scuffle between Marshon Lattimore and quarterback Jameis Winston when the receiver came rushing and blindsided the Saints’ cornerback.
In the letter addressed to Evans, Runyan said that he didn’t act like according to the standards expected for a professional football player.
Evans, meanwhile, is appealing the ruling of the league, said USA Today. But it’s likely that he won’t play in the game against the Jets in Week 10.
Following the game, Evans told reporters that he shouldn’t have lost it out there in the field but he was only protecting his quarterback. “It’s something I shouldn’t have done. It was very childish. I shouldn’t have done that,” he said, per the report from USA Today. “Unprofessional.”
The NFL has not yet announced the fines that will be slapped against Evans, Lattimore and Winston.
The suspension came amid the announcement of the NFL that Green won’t be suspended for the fight against Ramsey. Green immediately apologized to his teammates, fans and coaching staff following the game, and acknowledged that he will accept whatever sanction the league will impose.
The Washington Post said that while the Evans ruling was understandable, the NFL should make clear why Green wasn’t given the same penalty for essentially the same unsportsmanlike conduct and unnecessary force.