Mike Zimmer: Harrison Smith should have been penalized, not ejected

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Vikings safety Harrison Smith was ejected from Sunday’s game against the Texans for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Texans tight end Jordan Akins and Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer wasn’t shy about expressing his disagreement with the call.

Zimmer’s face shield got steamed up a bit as he shared his view that it was the incorrect call and he shared more of his feelings about it when he spoke to reporters after the 31-23 win.

“Quarterbacks can throw the ball in the middle of the field and there’s no repercussions whatsoever,” Zimmer said, via Jeff Wald of KMSP. “Harrison is not a dirty player. He’s never been a dirty player. I feel like he tried to get his shoulder in there. They told me that the league office ejected him. They want to give us a penalty? Fine, give us a penalty but don’t eject guys. This guy’s one of the best players in the NFL and one of the best guys in the NFL.”

NFL officiating head Al Riveron said that the call to disqualify Smith came from the field, but the league office agreed with that decision.

“The ruling on the field was that of a foul on a defenseless player, and also an ejection” Riveron said, via pool reporter John McClain of the Houston Chronicle. “Anytime the officials rule a disqualification on the field, we take a look at it in replay to make sure that it is there. After we looked at it, there was nothing clear and obvious for us to overturn the ruling on the field, therefore the ruling on the field stood.”

George Iloka took over for Smith and played alongside Anthony Harris at safety for the rest of the game.

33 responses to “Mike Zimmer: Harrison Smith should have been penalized, not ejected

  1. Harrison Smith has taken over the dirty hit crown with Vontaze Burfict now out of football.

  2. iliketurtles says:
    October 4, 2020 at 6:20 pm
    Have fun being without smith against russel Wilson lol

    @@@@@@@222

    It’s not college Einstein.

  3. Don’t know much about Smith as a player as I don’t watch the Vikings that often. But in this case he intentionally led with the crown of his helmet. Under current rules, that’s a major foul. Dirty hit for sure.

  4. Harrison Smith launched himself into a defenseless player and he led with the crown of his helmet. There is no place for that type of tackling. It was totally unnecessary. He deserved to be thrown out.

  5. Harrison smith led with his shoulder, not his helmet. The helmet-to-helmet was bang-bang. Smith makes those types of plays all the time and they rarely ever hit helmet to helmet. Anyone who follows the Vikings knows that was just an unfortunate hit, not a dirty hit.

    Zimmer is right.

  6. Wow, Zimmer sure does love a good cry.
    No wonder all the Barneys have taken to him so, he’s one of their own.
    Hopefully Smith gets a substantial fine for his cheap play.
    He certainly deserves one.

  7. Ejecting players instead of penalizing them does a stronger job of preventing the behavior in the future. .

  8. Anyone who calls that hit dirty has never played a down of football in their lives.

  9. Love all the Packer rubes comments under a bazillion different screen names. Smith has never been ejected ever from a game. Vikings proved they can win without Smith in the secondary and only wish they had a safety of Smith’s caliber. Ive seen a ton more intentional hits that got no one ejected. Even in college you get a warning.

  10. Packer fans were in here last week cheering a dalvin cook injury. They cheered Barr’s season ending injury saying it was deserved. . A dirty and cheap fan base.

  11. Anyone with sense and the addition of replay can see Harrison lead with his shoulder and the TE lowered his head to protect himself from contact he knew would be coming. The ejection was total crap and if he is suspended next week, it’s just an addition to how one sided this game has become.

  12. That’s fine. Eject him. JUST BE CONSISTENT THE REST OF THE SEASON WITH ALL TEAMS. That is all I am asking for. Consistent reffing.

  13. cheeseisfattening says:
    October 4, 2020 at 8:07 pm

    Packer fans were in here last week cheering a dalvin cook injury. They cheered Barr’s season ending injury saying it was deserved. . A dirty and cheap fan base.
    ____________________________________

    So salty. You would think that finally winning a game would put you in a better mood.

  14. Harrison Smith has always been a dirty player, he deserves a Suspension or maybe even a Lifetime Ban.

  15. mypercyhurts2 says:
    October 4, 2020 at 8:34 pm

    So salty. You would think that finally winning a game would put you in a better mood.
    __________

    Nah…..it’s not officially football Sunday until the Barneys get in their share of whining and complaints about their pointless game.

    Remember: If Viking fans aren’t crying, they’re not trying!

  16. stellarperformance says:
    October 4, 2020 at 7:33 pm
    Ejecting players instead of penalizing them does a stronger job of preventing the behavior in the future. .

    ———–

    Until defensive players start getting hurt trying to pull up to avoid contact. Or maybe they’ll change the rules like the did for your boi Rodgers. DBs can’t change their trajectories once they commit.

  17. It’s how Zimmer coaches.

    Their season is over so they may as well try to put everyone else on IR.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s a bounty type thing going on.

  18. Zimmer’s rationale says it all. As if the QB is inviting the lay-out hit if he throws over the middle. Which means Zimmer coaches his players to punish receivers who roam the middle.

    Sadly, that was a tactic that worked 10 years ago coach. The rules changed, so catch up. Wrap up and tackle is the new approach. Smith didn’t try to tackle. Hie tried to blow up. You got him ejected with your continued support of the old school way. It’s also why you’re 1-3 as a coach.

  19. danicafallsinlove says:
    October 4, 2020 at 9:57 pm
    Until defensive players start getting hurt trying to pull up to avoid contact. Or maybe they’ll change the rules like the did for your boi Rodgers. DBs can’t change their trajectories once they commit.
    Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    The Barr Rule protects all quarterbacks, not just Rodgers.

  20. stellarperformance says:
    October 5, 2020 at 4:45 am
    danicafallsinlove says:
    October 4, 2020 at 9:57 pm
    Until defensive players start getting hurt trying to pull up to avoid contact. Or maybe they’ll change the rules like the did for your boi Rodgers. DBs can’t change their trajectories once they commit.
    Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    The Barr Rule protects all quarterbacks, not just Rodgers.

    ———————————–

    Duh, its because of YOUR cry baby QB that the rule even exists in the first place. It was a penalty, yes, should he be fined maybe. They eject Smith for a bang bang play but yet that clown from Dallas basically alligator rolls Carson with the intent to injure but he didn’t get ejected. Again you’re asking a committed defensive player to change body direction at the same time that TE was was protecting himself and covering the ball. Its impossible.

    grandsonofcoach says:
    October 5, 2020 at 12:28 am
    Zimmer’s rationale says it all. As if the QB is inviting the lay-out hit if he throws over the middle. Which means Zimmer coaches his players to punish receivers who roam the middle.

    Sadly, that was a tactic that worked 10 years ago coach. The rules changed, so catch up. Wrap up and tackle is the new approach. Smith didn’t try to tackle. Hie tried to blow up. You got him ejected with your continued support of the old school way. It’s also why you’re 1-3 as a coach.

    ———————————————-

    It has nothing to do with coaching, football was a violent game back then and its a violent game now, that hasn’t changed. Harrison Smith is one of the better tacklers on the team. You are not in practices and you know squat about what Zim coahes his players. You are supposed to inflict punishment when a WR comes across the middle of the field, that’s your job as a SS/CB, to do it legally and within the rules. I’m sure proper technique is coached otherwise Smith would be suspended during every game.

  21. Smith tried to lead with his shoulder and you can see him trying to get lower with his helmet when he sees the WR coming down more also this was not intentional at all. Go watch the replay people.

  22. A wrong judgement like this will lead to further fan estrangement with this game. They have to take a moment to consider whether they really want to tilt the field like that, when it’s most likely that the foul was incidental, with three players converging just above the ground with speed.

  23. Some people just can’t help being liers. HS has never been a dirty player. He made a mistake. I think its actually the 1st time in his career that he’s been ejected. Sendejo had consistent issues, Smith is rarely penalized for dirty play so stop lying. Skol Vikings!

  24. People who are saying Smith plays like that all the time might be confusing him with Andrew Sendejo, who plays for the Browns now. I’m not surprised they penalized him, but I am confident he tried to hit with his shoulder. Harrison is a clean, smart player who is careful to avoid penalties and usually doesn’t come in late on a play. There also wasn’t a camera angle that showed whether the helmets or shoulders hit first.
    That being said, I hope the Texans TE is ok. Keep it clean and just say no to injuries!

  25. Agree with you at danicafallsinlove. Only Smith didn’t do it legally. Which was my point. Zimmer based on his comments is coaching off old rules.

    I don’t think he deserved to be ejected. But your coach is coaching 2018 rules hoping for the best. Find a better coach and you’ll instantly be a better team.

  26. So the Vikings squeaked by the winless, toothless Texans and people are jumping for joy saying that Minnesota, Cousins, and Zimmer are playoff bound. WRONG ! This team stinks and will be very lucky to win 6 games. At best. It was a garbage win.

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