Will Thomas Davis be suspended?

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Another Monday, another day spent wondering what the league office will do about an illegal act that may or may not require a suspension.

Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis applied an illegal helmet-to-helmet blindside block against Packers receiver Davante Adams, knocking him out of the game with a concussion. It was the second time this year that Adams found himself concussed by an illegal hit; in Week Four, Bears linebacker Danny Trevathan sent Adams to the hospital with a helmet-to-helmet hit after Adams’ forward progress was stopped.

So what will the league do to Davis? It was the same hit as the one that got Steelers receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster suspended two weeks ago. The only difference was that Smith-Schuster also taunted Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict, which the league mentioned in the suspension letter. Balancing out the taunting by Smith-Schuster is the fact that Davis was fined $48,000 several weeks back for a separate illegal hit, which puts him in line for greater discipline this time around.

The end result is that we won’t know until we know what the league will do. Which underscores the lack of predictability and consistency that arises from this entire process. Yes, there’s independence when it comes to reviewing the decisions made by 345 Park Avenue. But with a former player making the initial decision and with former players responsible for the appeal, the importance of complying with precedent sometimes gets lost in the shuffle.

And sometimes the people making the decisions may not even be aware of it. They’re arguably reacting to the moments the way fans do, with a stronger response coming for illegal hits that occur in high-profile, stand-alone games. With the Davis hit happening at 1:00 p.m. ET, it possibly didn’t register the same way it would have if the game had been played at night, with no other games being played at the same time.

37 responses to “Will Thomas Davis be suspended?

  1. If the NFL is serious about player safety he should be suspended. But we all know the NFL doesn’t care one iota about player safety. They just want plausible deniability in law suits.

  2. Carolina fans all using the same word, intent. You cant prove intent. It should be history and how egregious the hit was. Both go against Davis in this instance. 2 games dropped to 1 with appeal. Maybe add one for how disturbing Panther fans are defending the hit.

  3. No excuse for a veteran player, who has had multiple season-ending injuries, to head-hunt. Davis had every opportunity to make a clean block between the shoulder & hip and instead chose to go high knocking-out another player. Should have been automatic ejection, hopefully will be beginning next year. My guess is Goodell & company will look the other way with no discipline… ambiguity & inconsistency is how they roll.

  4. Packer fans with a memory are getting sick of Thomas Davis and his helmet to helmet hits. He ended the career of a 2nd round pick doing the exact same thing. Ask Terrence Murphy if Davis is a great guy.

  5. As a Panther fan I think if someone did that to my team I would want him suspended. Its not who Davis is and you could tell he was upset about his hit. As a Panther fan I can not preach about the head shots that Cam got and then not want the same protections for other players.

  6. The 2015 Walter Payton “Man of the Year” has now delivered two hits this season that he will be fined for. Remorse or not, the man left his feet and launched himself right into Davante Adams’ head. If that isnt punished with a suspension, the NFL truly doesnt care about player safety.

    Something that some Packers fans have forgotten is that Thomas Davis also ended Terrence Murphy’s career with a helmet-to-helmet hit on a kickoff return, where he stood over him and taunted him while he lay on the ground unable to move.

    The dude is a piece of trash.

  7. “Intent should play a role. It was a horrible hit and Davis should be fined but unlike Smith-Schuster, Davis had no intent to hurt the guy.”

    Id say leaving your feet and launching yourself helmet-first into the earhole of an opponent who isnt even looking at you is a pretty clear look at intent.

    Thomas Davis isnt the great all-around guy you Panthers fans think he is. And as many Packers player alluded to after the game, players around the league know he’s dirty.

  8. Time for the NFL to prove they are really serious about player safety or not. If they are then they should adopt the college football targeting rule that results in ejection. If they are not serious about player safety I guess they can hide behind the policy that prohibits teams from changing helmet colors since in their opinion a new unbroken in helmet seems more dangerous than a cheap shot hit like Davis’ yesterday.

  9. It just wouldn’t be an NFL weekend if the packers weren’t whining about something after a loss.

    Never the teams fault for losing. Always pointing the finger elsewhere.

    Now that they are out of the playoffs, the inevitable looking to the past will begin.

  10. All the Packers fans tears freezing as they hit the tundra…Suspend Davis for 1 game and move on. If his shoulder goes into Adams earhole rather than his helmet, its a legal hit. The NFL has to make sure these hits are discouraged, but crucifying Davis like he’s a dirty player is laughable.

  11. No, Davis should not be suspended. If Gronk got 1 game for winding up and spearing a helpless player after the whistle, no suspension for a hit that occurred on a split second act, happening in the game, between the lines.

    CAVEAT: Gronk’s purposeful attack, should have brought a multiple game suspension. It was off the field of play & after the play was dead. In most states, that is criminal assault. get that right, then let’s talk about Davis.

  12. pantherfan4life says:

    December 18, 2017 at 8:09 am

    As a Panther fan I think if someone did that to my team I would want him suspended. Its not who Davis is and you could tell he was upset about his hit


    They showed Davis “upset” or “remorseful” but only because he was thinking of the discipline afterwards, not his action. Davis knew exactly what he was going to do when he saw Adams trotting his way, which is to level him.

  13. Here’s the deal, with players being removed from the games for head injuries at a rate not previously seen, you have to do the same with the defenders/blockers delivering the hits as well. At this point it’s still worth it to headhunt, you’re looking at 15 yards and maybe a fine, while the guy you laid out is likely out for the game. That’s lopsided in terms of risk/reward. You have to eject the defender for the headshot too. Davis clearly launched himself into the head of the offensive player, he knew exactly what he was doing. Anyone who has played competitive football knows that move, it used to be something we celebrated and was the reason we were coached to keep “our heads on a swivel”. Those days are over. The NFL needs to change the rules now to save the game. Blind side blocks must be initiated with the hands and tacklers must make an attempt to wrap in every tackle. The days of players leaving their feet and launching themselves headfirst are over.

  14. What a game changing hit that was. Not only was it dirty, but Adams replacement is the one who fumbled the game away. Sucks to have a season end like that.

    On a side note, when are you going to stop pretending to be a packer fan numba1? Really sad

  15. Panthers fans:

    1 thing you need to know about Packers fans—they have serious double standards.

    Your team has key injuries? Stop whining, next man up, injuries are no excuse.

    If Clay breaks a qb’s arm? well that’s just part of the game…

    I could go on, but its just the same old stuff with them. Its sickening.

  16. billtetley53 says:
    December 18, 2017 at 10:11 am
    I could go on, but its just the same old stuff with them. Its sickening.

    But…….you are going on. And on, and on, and on. Same old stuff. Not sickening, just petty.

  17. If you’re not going to EJECT players for this bolshevik, why suspend them?

    Penalize them in the NEXT game, while a key player was knocked out in a game that meant EVERYTHING to his team? Ignorant.

    The League better pull their head out. They’re about to cross the Rubicon.

  18. Thomas Davis isnt the great all-around guy you Panthers fans think he is. And as many Packers player alluded to after the game, players around the league know he’s dirty.

    I like Thomas Davis.

    But I couldn’t care less about his act of contrition.

    DB move. Period.

  19. bring back smash mouth football!!!! keep your head on a swivel….basic stuff you learn in pee wee football. I want the old NFL back!!


    30 years ago, when players were 30lbs lighter, and everybody wasn’t running a 4.5 40, that was sustainable.

    The League CANNOT go on like this.

    At some point, a player IS going to DIE on the field. How will you feel then?

  20. I’ve been on Davis for four seasons now as the worst offender in the NFL for leading with the crown of the helmet.
    2 x in one game against Jimmy Graham alone
    After all this time, after all the incidents
    How does the NFL let him get away with it?

  21. Yeah .. he should have had to leave the field along with the concussed Davante Adams. He should be out for as long as Adams is out. That illegal hit eliminated the Packers top target while Thomas Davis got to continue playing .. that’s ridiculous!

  22. They won’t suspend him for the hit. Now, if he had a uniform infraction, THEN he’d get suspended.

  23. What will it take for the NFL and NFLPA to take a stand on these hits? Does someone have to die on the field from such a hit before they start enforcing measures to prevent this? When was the last time someone was ejected for such a hit? I can’t think of any. Yet if you run onto the field like Lynch did or touch a referee you get ejected. How whacked is that? You’d think these head-shots were more serious and if you get ejected or suspended for touching a ref you should get at least two games for making one of these dangerous hits. Adams has two concussions now from these dangerous hits that are supposed to be illegal. Players will keep doing it until the suspensions start. A small fine (equivalent to last then 0.001% of their salary) does NOTHING. I get that it’s football but with all the stuff going on about CTE does the NFL and NFLPA care about the health of their players? The NFLPA fights any suspension for a hit such as what happens to Adams but what about Adams? They don’t care about him obviously.

  24. Not sure how my fellow Pack fans are blameing the game ending fumble on this play. Seems unrelated and we are just a little emotional right now. Understandable boy’s but come on. Go pack

  25. How the hell does Davis get 2 games for this and Gronk only got one??? As much as I dislike Jerry, Goodell needs to go! No consistency!

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