A high-profile brawl goes Incognito
Two NFL players with connections to the Basin got into a boot parade last week, and it got downright nasty. Antonio Smith, former Cardinal and one of my favorite players, and Phoenix product, Richie Incognito, were throwing haymakers at each other in a preseason game between the Dolphins and Texans.
Richie Incognito and Antonio Smith have a history of fighting each other that dates back to when Antonio played for the Cardinals and Incognito for the Rams. Incognito, whom has a long and well documented rap sheet as being one of the “dirtiest” players in the game, threw a punch at Smith, and Antonio responded by ripping his helmet off and swinging it at Incognito’s face, grazing his chin.
I like Incognito, even though he’s “dirty.” He plays in a rage. He doesn’t like the opponent. He doesn’t try to make friends. I have no problem with that, especially if you play on my team. I don’t mind the big guys trying to rip somebody’s face off. I’ll take that over being passive — like many of them are — any day.
If you’re getting caught, getting flagged and costing your team penalty yards, you can’t have it. Coaches cannot tolerate it — and don’t — and players can’t be so selfish. If you don’t know how to compete in a street fight and do battle in hand-to-hand combat without getting flagged, then you need to go.
And that’s what the Rams decided when they let Incognito walk.
Whether you agree with playing football as aggressively and violently and dirty as Incognito or not, remember this: In his nine years as an NFL player, Incognito has dressed for 94 games and started every single one of them.
Coaches, apparently, don’t mind how he plays, either.