Arians: Suspend Julius Thomas as long as Calais Campbell is out

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Cardinals defensive end Calais Campbell is out 3-4 weeks with a knee injury suffered when Broncos tight end Julius Thomas drilled him with an illegal chop block. Cardinals coach Bruce Arians says that means Thomas should be suspended 3-4 weeks as well.

According to Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic, Arians wants the NFL to adopt a rule that a player who commits a penalty that results in an injury to an opposing player should be suspended while the opponent is out recovering from the injury.

That idea might sound like poetic justice, but it’s impractical in the NFL. Arians probably wouldn’t appreciate it if one of the Cardinals’ best players got called for a personal foul for a hit on an NFC West rival’s backup, and that team responded by putting the backup on injured reserve just to force the Cardinals to lose their star player. But that could happen under the scenario Arians is proposing.

Arians, who said on Sunday that he considered the hit the dirtiest play he had ever seen, hadn’t calmed down today. Arians said he believes Thomas purposely planned to take Campbell out for the game with the hit.

The NFL has said the hit was a violation of the league rules, and the 15-yard penalty was correct. But while Thomas might get fined, he’s not going to get suspended. No matter how much Arians thinks he should.

87 responses to “Arians: Suspend Julius Thomas as long as Calais Campbell is out

  1. I don’t agree with what Thomas did but we can never know what his intent was. If a player tears another players ACL, should he be suspended for the year? No, because we’ll never know if they meant to or not. With all the rule changes I really can’t fault players for going low.

    Again, dirty move by Thomas.

  2. Of course he’s angry, his team was man-handled. How about you move on from the “dirty block” and worry about winning your next game, coach. You have far more issues at QB to be worrying about changing the NFL rules.

  3. Eye for an eye seems excessive. It’s far better to let the Broncos get their hopes up and then implode in the playoffs.

  4. It was an unfortunate injury ; it’s too bad the folks who want to make the NFL a flag football league aren’t happy.
    I think we’ve heard just about enough of this story and wish Calais Campbell a speedy recovery.

  5. isn’t this writer the editor of PFT? how does he get away with these absurd final “sentences?” learn to use a comma, dude

  6. I like that idea, a player that injures another player on a dirty hit SHOULD be out as long as the injured player. Football is brutal enough to survive uninjured game after game, to lose playing time to a cheap hit is inexcusable and the guilty party should suffer every bit as the injured player. imho

  7. Oh come on, man. When this league starts suspending players for lengths of time that correspond with # of games an injured player is gonna miss, I will truly have given up on this society.

  8. Knees should be the same as the head: Totally off limits. 99% of guys in the NFL would prefer a head shot to a knee shot, and most guys have already said so. You can come back from getting your bell rung. Your knees getting destroyed? Not so much.

  9. That kind of block is a regular feature of the Denver offense, implemented and directed by their coach.

    Manning was being rushed and intercepted by Calais. Solution? Injure him…take him out.

    2 + 2 = 4.

  10. I like Arians but come on where was your outcry when you were with Pittsburgh and all the dirty hits there?

  11. This actually could work.

    And the situation MDS describes could be easily avoided, quite simply actually. An impartial doctor hired by the NFL. Evaluates the player when the injury happens, and publicly announces his diagnosis of how long the player will be out. If the player comes back sooner or later than what the NFL hired doctor dictates, that’s on the team of the injured player and is within their rights.

    So in this case- the doctor would say “4 weeks”. And there you go- 4 game suspension for the dirty hit. It could be done. And I wouldn’t mind if it was.

    However- this should be used for DIRTY hits- not ones that are just part of the game. Im in no way endorsing the type of refereeing we’ve been seeing, either.

  12. he should have told one of his back up D tackles to blast Peyton late while he was padding his stats and taken the 15 yards/fine.

  13. Denver Broncos- taking out opponents knees for the better part of thirty years. If the league hasn’t done anything by now, they will never will.

  14. dwoofer says: Oct 6, 2014 4:50 PM

    That kind of block is a regular feature of the Denver offense, implemented and directed by their coach.

    Manning was being rushed and intercepted by Calais. Solution? Injure him…take him out.
    Prove it.

  15. If this was the policy, teams would send in backups to get pro bowlers suspended all the time. They’d just hide them on the IR all season.

  16. Hey, backup O-lineman injured by that cut block, we’re going to need you to milk that knee sprain until the postseason.

  17. The Cards are my NFC team but come on Arians, get over it. Be like Bill and move the f on.

  18. It was a cheap shot on a good player and a good person.
    CC has never gone cheap during his tenure in the NFL. He’s been stand up day in and day out. To be taken out like that is flat out wrong. It wasn’t just that it was a shot to the knees Thomas then went out for a pass. As the TE he is either blocking or catching. If he is to chip and go…then chip. Not dive at CC’s knees.
    It was absolute garbage and I suspect a 1 game suspension coming. I would hope he gets 2, but NFL will suspend him 1 game. As they should

  19. Pass Interference, on the defense. Spot of the foul, 1st down. Oh, and the wr tore his acl so the DB is out for the year too. 1st down!

  20. This guy is a great coach but he sure is starting to cement a reputation for himself as a whiner. He threw this same tantrum a few weeks ago about a LEGAL hit by Dan Skuta on Drew Stanton. So I’m not surprised he won’t shut up about a hit that was of the dirty variety.

  21. What is your excuse for every other play Bruce? I seriously thought he was gonna cry at the press conference. Maybe football isn’t for you Bruce. Perhaps synchronized swimming would better suit you and camouflage your tears.

  22. Arians is a great coach, but he’s a classless crybaby with the media. He mocked Chip Kelly’s offense as a “college offense” before last year’s game, and now he’s crying about an illegal block. Shut up and coach, Bruce.

  23. The broncos cheating is nothing new zero superbowls since “capgate” look at how they faked all those injuries at the end of AFC title game last year.

  24. I whole-heartedly agree.

    The only way to clean up this league from egregiously nasty plays is to really starting acting like you mean what you say.

    If player safety is important, Julius Thomas has to sit so that everyone player can learn the lesson.

    Roger, here’s your moment: step up and do you job!!

  25. In the late ’60s, running back Mike Garrett of the Chiefs was clotheslined on a play by a Denver linebacker and had to leave the game.

    On the next play, his replacement and the QB went left while nine other guys went right–right at that cheap shot artist, who subsequently also left the game.

    That would probably be frowned upon by the League now, but it was, if not appropriate then tolerated, in the ’60s and helped keep things under control.

  26. While Bruce Arians is coming off as a cry-baby, the officiating doesn’t make sense anymore.

    I understand that it’s difficult to make a sound tackle when the target changes his position but I think it’s despicable to just dive at the knee of a player. Calais Campbell’s career could have been ended on that senseless play.

    I am all for ensuring these guys live healthy lives long after their career but I also feel that they should be able to have an extended career, not one ended by someone diving at their knee.

  27. eaglesnoles05 says: Oct 6, 2014 5:04 PM

    Pass Interference, on the defense. Spot of the foul, 1st down. Oh, and the wr tore his acl so the DB is out for the year too. 1st down!
    O ya, give the refs more power and rules so they can screw the game more!

  28. Arians is a tool. It was a dirty play and they should give a fine that is commiserate, but to ask for suspensions that matches the injury is dumb. I think he should be more worried about his QB going forward. AZ wings just got clipped.

  29. The only way Thomas gets suspended is if he compounded his illegal activity by using “innapropriate language” at the same time he executed the chop block.

  30. The Saints lost half a dozen players and coaches for 4-12 games and two high drafts and paid a million in fines for hypothetically thinking about but then not accomplishing what Julius Thomas actually did on video. But Roger Goodell is a Broncos fan not a Saints fan so it doesn’t matter, this will be a slap on the wrist.

  31. The Bengals went after Gronkowski’s knee again (they took him out in a season-ending injury last year) on his touchdown Sunday night. Gronk was fortunate that the defensive player did not get him square but he lowered his head and dived directly to the side of Gronk’s right knee.

  32. Not a Broncos or Cardinals fan. I watched the play and the replays and at the moment Campbell was not engaged with another player. Thomas cut him before he got to the lineman. It happened nearly simultaneously but they had not locked up. Arians is ticked because he lost another defensive player for an extended period. He can’t be serious in saying that it was the dirtiest thing he’s seen in 37 years. If it was, he hasn’t watched much football. I’m certain we could dig up some plays in which his former and current teams have been involved and the thousands of games played during his time in the league. Unfortunate injury, but there was no malice intended.

  33. I don’t know much about Arians,but respected him from a distance based on his record. After this though, I think he’s a cry baby. I hope he sees how well being a baby is working out for Harbaugh and shuts his trap.

  34. coloradical420 says: Oct 6, 2014 4:46 PM

    You have far more issues at QB to be worrying about changing the NFL rules.

    Yeah megahead is the only one allowed to change rules. Nothing happens to Thomas…he’s on the golden boy’s team.

  35. in after thought cc should have run thru pm like a mack truck on the interception. laid him out cold. bet all you broncos fans would be wailing then.

  36. It was a dirty play at a moment in the game when it was close and momentum seemed to be in AZ’s direction and AZ, led by its defense, had outscored opponents 30-0 in fourth quarters. It looked like targeted retribution for CC’s INT which had just led to a short TD.

    But Arians just has to focus on refocusing after a loss of not just CC but potentially his backup QB (and being forced to move forward with a project rookie or waiver wire pick up), TE Troy Niklas, OLB Matt Shaunessey, and a dinged up Patrick Peterson. This game turned devastating in the late second half for the Cardinals and Arians is venting instead of coaching.

  37. I don’t believe in fines. They’re idiotic. If a player commits a PENALTY, flag it and march off the yards on the field. That’s the point of a penalty. Fines should only be applied for something off the books, such as stomping on a player once he’s down or punching someone.

    Now, if a player commits a truly dangerous foul that does or could result in serious injury to another player … a one-game suspension might be a reasonable response. That way, you signal everyone in the league that crazy things won’t be tolerated. But there needs to be a predetermined consensus among the teams about what fouls will result in suspensions. The way Goodell throws out fines and suspensions willy-nilly, a guy could wind up being benched for a simple tackle.

  38. “Eye for an eye seems excessive. It’s far better to let the Broncos get their hopes up and then implode in the playoffs.”

    That’s very funny!!

  39. Isn’t it enough that he cost Peyton a chance at history? Any further punishment would just be excessive.

  40. Team was not man handled!! Down 4 with less than 3 minutes left in the 3rd quarter with your backup QB on the road you will take any day. One they got down to the 3rd string rookie QB is when the wheels came off.

  41. Only one thing worse than the coach going on and on, and that is people saying Thomas went for the knee to take him out. Nothing further from the truth. First, off the hit was not very hard, and it targeted the hip, not the knee. Look at the foot placement and you will he had his foot turned at a 60 degree angle to the knee. The injury was not from the knee getting hit, Thomas missed the hip as he turned, and caught the midthigh, which twisted the knee.

    The only contact to the upper part of the knee came after his knee buckled and the shoulder pad slid down very lightly onto the area right above the knee.

  42. Eye for eye sounds damn good to me! If you’ve ever had your livelihood threatened by another man…you’d feel the same way!

  43. I forgot to mention that the guy who took out Gronk’s knee last year now plays safety for the Broncos. Guys who think that playing tough excuses these cheap shots are punks. I remember Belichick benching Meriweather for dirty hits before finally giving up on a guy who was, at the time, a pro bowl player.

  44. Arians livelihood was threatened when Manning shredded his vaunted defense. His team was exposed and it stings. Whining won’t help.

  45. Part if the reason people love watching the broncos implode in te playoffs. I don’t care if Peyton breaks every qb record ever, it doesn’t matter because he loses when it matters. The league is designed specifically for him to win and he still can’t

  46. Denver fans on here bragging about beating 2nd and 3rd string QB’s and defense..
    Not impressed with Denver.
    Someone will break Mannings neck.

  47. Denver fans on here bragging about beating 2nd and 3rd string QB’s and defense..
    Not impressed with Denver.
    Someone will break Mannings leg.

  48. So in the NFL a dirty play that severely injures someone receives an equivalent punishment as a player spiking the ball in celebration, or celebrating a td with his teammates. This league is really going places.

  49. It’s unfortunate that this is the biggest storyline of this game. This was a chess match between one of the best offenses in the league and one of the best defenses. NFL football at its best. The Broncos ultimately won this game with talent and a great gameplan. It would be interesting to see what the Cardinals would do differently in a rematch.

  50. Die Hard Bronco Head here. The spirit of the rule was broken, a penalty was called, fine him and move on. Had the Cards committed this play against Denver, my answer would be the same.

  51. Do people realize cut blocks have been around forever right? Cut blocks happens in high school and even pee wee! So why this is getting so much attention is beyond. me

  52. Bruce Arians calls it like it is. He is no whiner or cry baby.Truth is that you Denver people are too stupid to differentiate whining and calling someone out.
    He did come out and say they Denver cheated or blame the officials, he called out a cheap shot.
    The more you talk about Bruce the dumber you begin to sound, all of you !

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