Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans has been suspended for one game by the NFL for his role in the fight that broke out between his team and the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.
Ian Rapoport from NFL Network reported Monday that the league has reviewed Evans’ actions and noted that he is considered a repeat offender after being suspended in 2017 for a similar incident.
Don’t blame Brady!
Evans’ suspension in 2017 also came following a fight with Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore. On Sunday, Evans knocked Lattimore down on the field as the cornerback was bickering with Buccaneers star player Tom Brady.
“It was a low blow,” Saints running back Mark Ingram said of Evans’ shot on Lattimore. For you to walk in and sneak someone in, I mean, I don’t understand what you’re supposed to do? If someone comes and shoots you, nobody respects that. As a man, as a player, you have to be able to defend yourself somehow.
Evans defended his actions after the win, saying he thought he saw Lattimore throw a punch.
“I wasn’t going to let that happen,” Evans said. We supported each other.
Lattimore was also ejected from Sunday’s game, which was tied 3-3 when the fight broke out. The Buccaneers won it 20-10.
“Officials had penalties for these two players,” NFL senior vice president of refereeing Walt Anderson said. We have actually reviewed these actions and determined that the actions of these two players have reached the level of flagrant and therefore disqualification. »
Lattimore and Evans have had a personal rivalry since 2017, when Lattimore was Defensive Rookie of the Year. During a Saints win at New Orleans that season, an altercation began along the Tampa Bay sideline when then-Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston pointed in Lattimore’s face. and told him to return to his own bench.
That’s when Evans hit Lattimore, throwing him hard on the court. Only Evans had been expelled that time. He was also suspended for a subsequent game.
Bucs coach Todd Bowles said he hopes Evans won’t be suspended this time around.
“We’ll see what happens with the league, but I haven’t seen the streak,” Bowles said. It’s an emotional game. You don’t want punches thrown from either side and I’m sure their coach says the same thing. Things happen.
“We try to be a disciplined club, but every now and then the game gets emotional and out of control,” added Bowles. We will make our corrections and move on. »
“The turning point of the match was the skirmish between Evans and Lattimore”, Proulx