Walker on receiving end of helmetless head butt

Getty Images

The Thursday night game between the Colts and the Titans has gotten chippy, to say the least.

And it has included Colts linebacker Erik Walden applying a head butt after a play to Titans tight end Delanie Walker.  Making the gesture even more troubling is that Walden was wearing a helmet, and Walker wasn’t.

Walden was flagged but not ejected.  It’s possible he’ll be getting suspended.  The NFL has drawn a bright line between things that happen during a play and things that happen after the play has ended.  For misconduct occurring following the conclusion of a play, the penalties tend to be more severe.

With the league concerned about protecting player heads, the decision of one player wearing a helmet on his head to hit another player in the unhelmeted head with that helmet likely will trigger a harsh penalty.

If, for example, a cartoonish WWE arm stomp after the whistle by Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh resulted in a two-game suspension in November 2011, Walden’s butt to Walker’s bare head should be met with at least that much.

56 responses to “Walker on receiving end of helmetless head butt

  1. He should have been ejected. If he ends up with any punishment from the headbutt, then the refs should be penalized as well for not ejecting him. Refs always get a free pass on calls that later warrant a fine, but are not even flagged. It’s wrong.

  2. Mike Carey once ejected Suggs from a game for having “malice in his heart”. I guess helmet to no helmet headbutt aren’t as egregious.

  3. The officiating in this game is again horrible, yet no Blandino to explain why or how he plans to stop it because frankly he has no clue.

    And TEN blew it by not calling a TO with 34 seconds left since IND didn’t have enough TOs left to do anything about it. So they lost the opportunity for a free return and possible FG to end the half. Oh well, they’ll never figure that stuff out.

  4. Should have been an ejection. Ref was five feet away. The refs are blowing this one big time. The other ref missed 3 guys on the field all within 3 feet of him. Uhhhhh, how do you miss that??

  5. He kinda hit ‘im more or less ‘theatrically’ in the beard area with fine control albeit also seeming to premeditate

  6. Not surprising he didn’t get ejected. That’s the NFL refs for you.

    We all know what’s gonna happen now…NFL reviews film, suspends player for one game, player appeals, NFL lowers to just a petty fine.

  7. Considering that Walden pulled off Walker’s helmet before the headbutt, I’d have to agree with the two-game suspension theory.

  8. Rapporport at halftime on Thursday night football continues his bull..t talk about Rothlesburger being dissatisfied with Pittsburgh. Rapporport is the one who should look for a new job; he’s total bull.

  9. Though there was no apparent injury, that infantile gesture should cost Walden dearly. Understandably, a player may cross some boundaries during the zealous pursuit of a play between whistles but Walden’s stunt was immature, cowardly and wholly unjustifiable. He should’ve been ejected on the spot and now the league will need to impose sanctions that the refs didn’t have the gumption to pursue.

  10. Uhhh what about the punch thrown after by Walker? Not saying Walden shouldn’t be suspended, but reaction can and should punished as well.

  11. First he rips his helmet off & then headbutts him with his helmet still on with no apparent provocation? Punk move. Should have been tossed instantly. No less than a 2 game suspension is good enough. And did I see him on the very next play trying to rip Chris Johnson’s head off in the pile after the play was over? Couldn’t tell if that was him or Jean-Francois.

  12. This was one guy I’m glad the packers didn’t resign. He had a fluke overproductive year when we won the super bowl, but hasn’t done anything since, except beat his girl and get beat by kapernick last year in the playoffs. He was pathetic.

  13. It’s probably safe to assume Delanie Walker didn’t wake up this morning thinking he was going to end up having something in common with Walden’s ex-girlfriend.

  14. Blow to the head call on Mathis in which he didn’t hit Fitz in the head. Walker gets helmet ripped off and then is head butted by the same player. Officials almost penalize colts on phantom late hit when Fitz tripped out of bounds. What the hell is going on out there?

  15. He’ll be suspended for having Ndamakong Suh in his heart.

    Then Suh will be suspended for being a bad influence. Just to get his attention, right Merton “Chicken Neck” Hanks?

  16. Walker approached HIM! As if daring him to do it! Both deserve some consequence for the action, period. But yes, Walden is A LOT more at fault. Just saying, Walker wasn’t exactly innocent in this

  17. The officials didn’t miss it. the flag was thrown for the facemask so he was looking right at them. No reason this should have gone unpunished with player safety being so important.
    Vince McMahon says for Indy it’s OK.

  18. Why doesn’t the NFL eject players on the field when they see a clear violation? One ref was right there and saw what happened with the ripping of the helmet prior to the head-butt. Teams need to enforce the violations. Every coach saw it or heard about it in real time. If you get ejected during a game, you should have to sit the following game as well. Why are there so many problems with the NFL these days? Goodell?

  19. Maybe if you properly fitted your helmet it wouldn’t come off so easily. If it does, walk to get your helmet and don’t try to play gangster with the guy. Simple!

  20. Mike Carey and his crew are the most inconsistent officiating crew in the NFL. Missed calls, bad calls, completely made up calls… I don’t know how this guy is employed.

    I’m going to be very surprised if he doesn’t get a huge fine if not at least a one game suspension.

  21. Who cares? Neither of these teams matter in the NFL. Seriously, zero relevance. Both were once historic franchises that left their original city for greed. Pathetic.

  22. Colts fan here. I’m looking forward to seeing what our project 1st round pick Bjorn Werner has learned about the NFL in the next few games. Walden should absolutely be suspended for that. There is no room in the NFL for that garbage. This isn’t even a “protect the players” issue…this is “just be a decent person” issue. Who rips off another players helmet, then headbutts him in the face after he gets upset about getting his helmet ripped off?! 4 years, 16 mill. He was way overpaid to begin with. Cut your losses. Let the rook learn. Those kinda stupid things are how franchises get bad reputations. Get him outta Indy!

  23. Not a fan of either team, but when I saw that, I was livid. The head referee should be suspended for missing that without pay…and how can that not be reviewed?? Seriously, that was bad…

  24. Come on, It’s obvious the helmeted guy hit the unhelmeted guy in the pads. I have no skin in this game and am not a fan of either team. I guess you can call it a head butt if someone uses their head. But it wasn’t helmet to head contact by any means.

    This whole GOTCHA! thing is getting quite silly.

    Signed Incognito…

  25. What’s the point of having the possibility of being ejected if the refs are to chicken to EVER eject anybody for ANYTHING? It’s a penalty that is never enforced, and so players rightfully ignore it.

    Refs need to grow a pair and start ejecting some of these clowns that do stuff like that. That is the ONLY thing that will make them think twice about doing something stupid. Suspension after the fact ignores the impact the player who should have been ejected still has on the game since they stay in the game.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!