On Sunday, Browns safety T.J. Ward gave Bengals receiver Jordan Shipley a shot to the head that drew a 15-yard penalty and a $15,000 fine.
On Friday, Browns defensive coordinator Rob Ryan teed off on the Bengals for dirty play, too.
Said the identical twin of Jets coach Rex Ryan, via the Cincinnati Enquirer: “If they want to worry about a cheap shot they ought to look at first
and 10 on the 35, third quarter, 4:24 left, make sure you get that down
and watch their guard Nate Livings. Our kids played great the whole
game. They want to [complain] about [T.J. Ward] and he hit a guy in the face. This kid hits our guy in the back after he got a sack for a forced
fumble, [Scott] Fujita, and a blocked field goal over him. Then this
kid dives and hits him in the back of the legs. If you want to talk
about cheap, talk about this asshole. Excuse me, Nate Livings. To be
honest with you, I think we took Cincinnati’s best shot, and we won.
That’s the facts.”
Rob Ryan also sounded off regarding the brouhaha over the T.J. Ward hit.
“It’s unfortunate,” Rob Ryan said. “I know the kid’s disappointed that they called a
penalty on that play because we saw it as a bang bang play the kid drops
the ball. He made a great read, he was in double coverage away from the
ball, the man went outside and came back inside and went to knock the [heck] out of the guy on third down in the red zone and that’s how we
teach. You teach to hit them properly, the young man didn’t lead with
his head, he’s hitting him the way we teach him and then there’s a big
hullabaloo about this penalty but [heck] those guys need to shut up.
This is our team, they don’t coach our team. We do.”
We’ve got a couple of observations.
First, we’re not sure whether it would be a good thing or a bad thing for the Ryan brothers to be the NFL’s answer to the Winklevoss twins. (“I’m 5’11”, 300 pounds, and there are two of me.”) Four our purposes, it probably would be a great thing.
Second, we know it’s not a good thing for Rob Ryan to say publicly that he’s coaching guys up to hit opposing players in the head.
Moving forward, we wouldn’t be surprised to see Ryan and/or the Browns fined by the NFL if/when T.J. Ward or other Browns players deliver hits that the league deems to be illegal.