Eagles defensive end Derek Barnett was fined $28,075 last week for his helmet-to-helmet hit on Packers running back Jamaal Williams during Philly’s Week Four win and he may be hearing from the league in the wake of their Week Five win as well.
Barnett was flagged for unnecessary roughness for a low block on Jets guard Alex Lewis at the end of Nate Gerry‘s interception return for a touchdown in the first quarter of a 31-6 Eagles win. Barnett had a similar penalty in Week Two and head coach Doug Pederson said on Monday that Barnett “didn’t need to do it” while discussing the need to avoid such plays in the future.
“Derek and I have talked. We talk during the week. We talked during the game yesterday about it,” Pederson said. “Listen, it’s an emotional game and sometimes things escalate during the game. Having been out there and being around those guys, obviously you don’t ever want to be labeled as one of those type of athletes, but he’s aggressive. He plays hard. He plays to the whistle. I’m not going to take that away from him, obviously. We’ve just got to be smarter and it starts with me communicating that with the team and being a more disciplined football team that way.”
Should Barnett continue to accumulate fouls for illegal hits, he could run the risk of a suspension that would leave the Eagles shorthanded at some point this season. That doesn’t seem like an imminent possibility, but Pederson would prefer that the flags stop flying all the same.