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safety Steve Gregory said he didnt think W

Post by lw789 » Fri Feb 01, 2019 7:57 am

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. - The NFLs officiating chief has cleared Broncos receiver Wes Welker of any wrongdoing for his hit that knocked Patriots cornerback Aqib Talib out of Sundays AFC Championship. "It was a legal hit," Vice-President of Officiating Dean Blandino said on the NFL Network on Wednesday night. On Monday, New England coach Bill Belichick blasted Welker for the hit, calling it "one of the worst plays" hed seen in nearly four decades of coaching. Without mentioning his former player by name, Belichick said it "was a deliberate play by the receiver to take out Aqib, no attempt to get open." He added, "Ill let the league handle the discipline on that play." There will be no discipline for Welker; Blandino said there was simply no infraction of the rules. Welker, coming from the right, collided with Talib, who was running from the left to stay with his receiver, a split-second before Peyton Mannings pass went off the hands of receiver Demaryius Thomas a few yards away in the first quarter Sunday. No flag was thrown. Talib left the game with a knee injury and didnt return, and Manning threw for 400 yards in Denvers 26-16 win that sent the top-seeded Broncos to the Super Bowl. "The first potential foul would be for offensive pass interference; a receiver cant block downfield before the ball is touched, so the timing is important," Blandino said on his weekly appearance on the NFL Network. He noted that as "contact occurs, the ball is touched almost simultaneously. We dont have a foul for pass interference." "The other thing, is it unnecessary roughness? Under the current rules it isnt," Blandino said. "Its not late; Talib wasnt out of the play." Given that an injury occurred, Blandino said he expects the leagues competition committee to examine the play in the off-season "and determine if there needs to be a change. But under the current rules, this is a legal play." Welker, who had a cool relationship with Belichick before leaving New England as a free agent last off-season, hasnt been available for comment this week as the Broncos wont practice until Thursday. But after the game, Welker said, "it was one of those plays where its kind of a rub play and I was trying to get him to go over the top, and I think he was thinking the same thing and wanted to come underneath and we just kind of collided. ... It wasnt a deal where I was trying to hit him or anything like that." Broncos coach John Fox responded to Belichicks stinging criticism on Monday by saying Welker is a "a great player, high integrity. I can say that we were not doing anything with intent." At 5-foot-9 and 185 pounds, Welker is 4 inches shorter and 20 pounds lighter than Talib. Hes also wearing a special helmet to guard against further head injury after missing the final month of the season with his second concussion. Hes also never been known as a dirty player. Patriots safety Steve Gregory said he didnt think Welker would deliberately try to hurt a player, saying, "I dont think anybody plays that way, especially at this level of football with two great football teams in the Broncos and ourselves." Blandino said he has spoken with Belichick this week about the play "and obviously there is a difference of opinion there and something that well continue to look at during the off-season." ___ AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org ___ Follow AP Pro Football Writer Arnie Melendrez Stapleton on Twitter: http://twitter.com/arniestapleton Discount Nike SB Shoes . Louis Cardinals, the team will be celebrating the 25th anniversary of the opening of the SkyDome. 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By comparison, the Miami Heats odds plummeted from 3-1 favourites before LeBron left, to 50-1.PHOENIX -- The Arizona Diamondbacks avoided arbitration with reliever Joe Thatcher on Friday, agreeing to a one-year contract worth $2,375,000. The 32-year-old left-hander was 3-2 with a 3.20 ERA in 72 appearances with the Diamondbacks and San Diego Padres last season. Arizona also swapped arbitration figures with outfielders Mark Trumbo and Gerardo Parra. Trumbo asked for $5.85 million, while the Diamondbacks were at $3.4 million. Parra asked for $5.2 million, compared to a $4.3 million proposal by thhe team.dddddddddddd Arizona acquired Trumbo from the Los Angeles Angels in a three-team trade in December. The slugger hit .234 with 34 home runs and 100 RBIs last year. Thatcher came to Arizona as part of the July 31 trade that sent right-hander Ian Kennedy to the Padres. Since 2007, Thatcher ranks third among major leaguers in the percentage of inherited runners to score at 19 per cent. 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