Bernard Pollard's Hit on Tom Brady Very Similar to Jared Allen on Matt Schaub
Rather talented quarterback for the Patriots. Three-time Super Bowl champion. Holds the single-season record for touchdown passes. Led the Patriots to a 16-0 season last year. Dating Giselle Bunchen.
That guy. You know, the one who blew out his knee in Week One. Even though he isn't playing again this season, you should be reminded of Brady every time you watch New England play.
If not, just let the game announcers do it for you.
Remember when Brady was hit by the Chiefs' Bernard Pollard, and even though every New England fan on the planet was crying for the NFL to fine, suspend, ban, or shoot Pollard, the league immediately said Pollard was in the right?
And we here at FanHouse agreed?
I think there's also a consensus that what Jared Allen did to Matt Schaub wasn't right. The league Friday announced agreement with that consensus, fining Allen $50,000.
However, a review of video from Pollard's hit and Allen's hits could lead you to a different conclusion. View after the jump.
First off, I give you Allen's hits on Schaub. The league saw these as a clear violation, hence the large fine for Allen.
Now, please take a look at Pollard's hit from Week One.
Please put your team-colored glasses down for a second and watch them closely. I am a Packer fan, so I certainly have no reason to stick up for Jared Allen, and I have no love lost for the Patriots, either.
However, if you look objectively, it's clear that there isn't a terribly huge difference. If you want to split hairs, you could argue that Pollard was obviously forced to the ground by Sammy Morris. Allen went low, but it didn't appear that he was forced to the ground. It was more of a choice.
That said, isn't Allen's job to get to the quarterback and make a play? If we're going to start restricting the ability of defensive players to make such plays, why not just put the quarterback in a red "DON'T HIT ME" jersey and get it over with? Did he dive at Schaub's knees? Yes, but only because he had no other way to make a play on a quarterback who, in both cases, was still holding the ball as Allen made his final lunge.
(It's also worth noting that on one of the hits, Schaub was hit high as Allen hit him low. Looking at the replay, I'm not sure it's fair to crucify Allen for that, because I'm not sure he could have known Schuab was being hit high.)
I'm all for fining Allen, as I think the league has sent a very clear message. Defensive players are to stay away from a quarterback's knees. And I don't have a problem with protecting the quarterback, as long as we don't go too far in that.
But now that the standard has been set in 2008, I'm not sure I agree with letting Pollard off scot-free.