Colts linebacker Erik Walden and Tampa Bay Buccaneers safety Dashon Goldson saw their names on the list of players suspended by the NFL for violations in week 11.
Erik Walden of the Colts was an obvious name after his headbutt of a helmetless player against the Tennessee Titans on Thursday Night Football to begin the week. The play was clearly dirty and the biggest surprise with the incident was that he was not ejected from the game on the spot.
Dashon Goldson of the Buccaneers on the other hand was more surprising to see suspended. Goldson’s hit on Atlanta Falcons receiver Roddy White on Sunday was deemed to be illegal, but was not scrutinized as nearly as much afterwords compared to Walden’s hit.
Roddy White was deemed to be defenseless when Goldson hit him helmet-to-helmet and as a result the suspension was given.
The appeals process likely will be utilized by both Erik Walden and Dashon Goldson, although it is unclear as of yet whether the Colts and Buccaneers will be able to get their starting defenders back for next week’s action.
Erik Walden’s play was clearly dirtier, but he may have a better chance of reducing his punishment by the NFL than Goldson. A first time offender, Walden may be able to plead his case. For Goldson, it appears unlikely he will be able to reduce his penalty. This is his third violation this year, the last of which seeing a one-game suspension reduced to a $100,000 fine after further review by the league.
The Indianapolis Colts face the Arizona Cardinals next week and could use Erik Walden to contain rising star Andre Ellington and the rest of the suddenly competitive Cardinal offense. Dashon Goldson and the Buccaneers look to make it three straight wins after an 0-8 start as they face the Detroit Lions. Neither man can practice or participate in the game while suspended.
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