Johnson was a little slow to get up from Landry’s block — which was not flagged by the officials, unlike the 2016 hit (which also drew a $24,309 league fine) — but eventually returned to the game. Williams wasn’t so lucky: He suffered a serious back injury on the 2016 play and never played another down of professional football, retiring in January. The Bills are starting to notice a pattern here.
“Landry, he’s a good receiver, physical guy, but some of those plays that he has — Aaron Williams, Taron, I’m pretty sure he has other ones — I just think they’re dirty,” Bills linebacker Lorenzo Alexander said Sunday, per ESPN. “Coming from the outside of the box in, the league needs to do a better job of calling penalties on those types of plays. Obviously, defenders get called all the time on stuff that is probably less egregious than that. If we’re going to protect our football players, we need to protect everybody, not just offensive guys.
“It was dirty at the end of the day, and that’s how I feel about it.”
Alexander has a point, especially considering the league’s crackdown on both offensive and defensive players lowering their helmets, leading to a bevy of peculiar penalties so far this preseason. Bills safety Micah Hyde concurred, saying that if a defensive player did something like that it would be an “automatic flag.” He also complained that Landry’s block was so outlandish because he didn’t have to be nearly as physical for it to have had the same effect.
“That’s ridiculous,” Hyde said. “Because if a defensive player does that to an offensive player, he’s getting ejected. I don’t care if he lowered his shoulder or not. He’s coming all the way from No. 1, past the numbers and flying down onto the hashes and cleaning up somebody. That’s the same as that play that Aaron Williams got hit on a couple years back and basically ruined his career.
“To me, that’s B.S. You can’t do that. All you have to do is get into position, screen him off. He doesn’t have to come in and try to kill anybody.”
Landry apologized to Johnson after the fact but said he’s just doing his job.
“I pride myself on being a complete receiver, and it takes those types of plays, making those types of blocks, or just a block period, to make sure Carlos [Hyde] could get in or Duke [Johnson], whoever’s running the ball, or another receiver. It’s important,” he said.
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