The Raiders admitted after the game they were trying to “take out” Panthers quarterback Cam Newton.
Newton bumped an official, and wasn’t thrown out.
In the immortal words of Vince Lombardi, “What the hell is going on out here?”
Yesterday’s Panthers-Raiders game was a mess from start to finish, making it hard to argue referee Jerome Boger and his crew had control of things.
Raiders defensive tackle Tommy Kelly was flagged for retaliating when Newton kicked at him from the pile after a sack.
“He kicked me, and I ain’t fixing to take that off nobody,” Kelly said, via Jerry McDonald of BayAreaNewsGroup.com. “What are you going to do when someone kicks you? You going to take it? Nah.”
That didn’t make it OK by his coach.
“We’re trying to change the culture, and what we have to understand is we have to keep our composure in those types of situations because nothing good comes out of it,” Raiders coach Dennis Allen said.
Then came an admission the Raiders were trying to get Newton out of the game, after Raiders starting quarterback Carson Palmer was knocked from the game earlier.
“You take our guy out, we’re going to take your guy out,” Kelly said. “We’re not out to hurt someone, but when that happens … .”
Newton was later flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct but wasn’t ejected. Boger told a pool reporter that he “misspoke” when saying Newton was flagged for contact, saying it was for “disrespectfully addressing an official” and the contact “was not of a malicious nature.”
The frustration (with the officials, and each other) was palpable as the day went on, and none of three parties involved distinguished themselves in the process.