Another unnecessary Vontaze Burfict controversy has arose as a result of an officiating error.
This time, it was a personal foul penalty called on Burfict during the Cincinnati Bengals’ 30-16 win over the Cleveland Browns. It came when Burfict hit an unsuspecting Corey Coleman coming across the middle on a pass play. It was a key play in a game that was still close at the time it occurred, but thankfully, it did not prove costly in what turned into a relatively easy win.
The Cincinnati Enquirer has since reported that Burfict will not be suspended for the play, but it will be reviewed for a potential fine.
On Monday, Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis defended the hit and his star linebacker, saying “it was legal.”
“It is unfortunate, though. That’s perfectly (legal),” said Lewis. “The guy is running at four (yards beyond the line of scrimmage), sees Vontaze running, alters to three, Vontaze hits him with the shoulder on the shoulder. That’s a legal football (play). The quarterback was in the pocket.
“Now, the quarterback then left the pocket — whether or not the referee deemed that (to be the reason), I don’t know. It’s unfortunate to have that penalty, because that led to the field (goal) position from there.”
It’s no secret that Burfict is under the microscope of the league and its many officials. We’ve seen it help lead to penalties and even ejections that were uncalled for. That’s something Burfict and the Bengals have to overcome, and on this occasion, they did so en route to a win over the Browns.
Vontaze Burfict Fine & Suspension History
|10.27.2017||--||$12,154||Kicking Roosevelt Nix|
|8.28.2017||Three-game suspension (after appeal)||$1,770,975||Illegal hit against Anthony Sherman|
|4.1.2016||Three-game suspension||$502,941||Hit on a defenseless receiver (Antonio Brown)|
|12.18.2016||--||$69,454||Multiple unsportsmanlike conducts|
|10.15.2014||--||$25,000||Ankle-twist on Cam Newton and Greg Olsen|
|9.27.2013||--||$21,000||Hit on a defenseless receiver (James Jones)|
|9.27.2013||--||$10,000||Striking player in the groin|