When Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis said Monday afternoon he wasn’t concerned about Vontaze Burfict being suspended, he was talking about the linebacker’s questionable low hit from behind on New England tight end Martellus Bennett.
But a few hours after Lewis’ press conference ended, a new video emerged of Burfict appearing to stomp on the leg of LeGarrette Blount after the Patriots running back had scored the final touchdown of the game with 57 seconds left.
The video was posted by ESPN.com Patriots reporter Mike Reiss.
The video, which is from the coaches film shot from a high angle behind the end zone, does not show whether Burfict’s foot landed on the back on Blount’s leg, but the running back reacts angrily, jumps to his feet and shoves Burfict, drawing a 15-yard penalty for unnecessary roughness.
ESPN’s Josina Anderson reported this morning that the league will make a decision on possible discipline for Burfict by Wednesday, and possibly today.
While the hit on Bennett may not have drawn a suspension on its own, the second video and Burfict’s prior infractions could lead to the linebacker having to miss more games.
Burfict was suspended three games to start the 2016 season for repeated violations of the player-safety rules. Again, it was a cumulative penalty for multiple infractions, including his hit on Antonio Brown in the wild-card playoff game and a blatant, away-from-the-ball shot on Baltimore tight end Maxx Williams, which drew a $50,000 fine.
Sunday’s stomp alone could warrant suspension, as a similar incident did for then-Detroit defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh in 2011 when he stomped on Green Bay offensive lineman Evan Dietrich-Smith in a Thanksgiving Day game, drawing a two-game suspension.