Roughing The Passer May Cost Patriots’ Wilfork

Vince Wilfork, New England Patriots defensive tackleNew England Patriots defensive tackle Vince Wilfork may be a little lighter in the wallet after an incident involving him and Buffalo Bills quarterback J.P. Losman in last week’s Bills-Patriots game. On Boston radio station WEEI’s Dale and Holley Show, Wilfork said that he expects to get fined by the National Football League for a “late hit” on the Bills QB. He said, “I’m playing football. It is what it is. I did hit him low, so I’m sure the NFL will have something coming, a FedEx in my locker this week. I’m moving forward and so is the team.”

The injury to Losman occurred when on the first play of the game, Losman tossed a swing pass to running back Marshawn Lynch. Wilfork shortly thereafter collided with Losman’s knee after a hard rush up the middle. As expected, Losman claimed that the hit was late; Wilfork disagreed, saying, “I’ve been playing this game for a long time, from Pop Warner to now, and I’ve never been classified as a dirty player. The only time I was classified as a dirty player was my rookie year playing against this same team. One of their offensive linemen, me and him bumped heads, and he got a concussion.”

Should the NFL act upon this incident, it probably will wait until Friday to issue a fine. The league as a rule protects its quarterbacks from shots to the head and knees and Wilfork sees this as a source of his current situation, adding, “Whatever it is, I’m pretty sure the NFL is going to protect their quarterbacks. I’ll deal with it. Hopefully they’ll see something to overturn it. I’m pretty sure that’s not going to happen because it is a quarterback I hit. I’m not losing any sleep over it.”

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