BOSTON (CBS) — Friday is the day when NFL players find envelopes in their lockers to notify them of fines from the league office, and as expected, Wes Welker’s locker was devoid of any mail this week.
The Boston Herald’s Jeff Howe reported that the NFL issued no fine or punishment of any kind for Welker’s hit on Aqib Talib in Sunday’s AFC Championship Game. The hit left Talib injured and unable to return, a factor that contributed to the Broncos’ 26-16 win over the Patriots.
Patriots head coach Bill Belichick, who’s been in football since the mid-1970s, referred to the hit as “one of the worst plays I’ve seen.” No penalty was called on the play, and NFL VP of officiating Dean Blandino said later in the week that indeed, no penalty should have been called.
The Broncos led 3-0 when Talib suffered the injury early in the second quarter, and they went on to open up a 23-3 lead with Talib out of the game.
“Is it unnecessary roughness? Under the current rules it isn’t,” Blandino said this week. “It’s not late; Talib wasn’t out of the play.”