Antrel Rolle was flagged for a hit on a defenseless receiver in the second quarter of last night’s game. What could he have done differently?
“Honestly, I don’t see any other way I could have done it,” the Giants’ safety said of his hit on receiver Mark Clayton, who wound up with a concussion. “There is nothing else I could have done except let him catch the ball and then grab him and hug him down like he’s my son.”
Rolle insisted he did not lead with his helmet and hit Clayton with a shoulder pad. He even noted how he turned his head to avoid the collision and wound up with a nick on his neck. But he wasn’t flagged for a helmet-to-helmet hit. His infraction was on a defenseless receiver.
Rolle is grappling with a definition of defenseless. Especially, as he noted, that “nine out of 10 times” as a safety he is coming down on a receiver who has no way of seeing him.
“There was a chance he could have caught the ball had I not made that collision with him,” Rolle said. “I don’t understand how they want us to tackle. It’s pretty much out of control … There’s too much emphasis. Let us play ball. We’re not out there to intentionally hurt anyone, just let us play ball.”