Washington Redskins defensive end Jason Hatcher was frustrated with the officiating following the 44-16 loss to the Carolina Panthers on Sunday, hinting that he felt the team hasn’t received favorable calls this season because of the team’s name.
The entire team was upset after the game because of an interception returned for a touchdown by cornerback Chris Culliver that was nullified on a controversial unnecessary roughness penalty on Culliver on the second quarter. The officials felt Culliver took an illegal helmet-to-helmet shot on tight end Greg Olsen, which deflected the ball into the air and in the arms of Culliver for the 75-yard score.
The Panthers scored six plays later to take the lead, 21-14, midway through the second quarter and outscored the Redskins 30-2 for the rest of the game.
Asked why he felt the team wasn’t able to bounce back from that momentum swing, Hatcher responded, “I’m not sure man. We’ve just got to check ourselves. Everybody got to look theirselves in the mirror. This is a team sport, and we lost as a team. Everybody got to get they self together, get mentally and physically tougher so we can go in here and win. It’s going to be hard, you know, we fighting against teams and the referees. It just is what it is.
“I’m not saying this out of character to get fined, but it is what it is. I don’t know if it’s about the name or what, but at the same time, we play football too. We work our butt off too. Don’t single us out. At the end of the day, it’s the name. Don’t worry about the name – we players and we work our butt off too. I’m just frustrated with it. We shouldn’t have to be punished for that. It’s been every game, calls after calls that should’ve been made in our favor, but it goes to them. It’s just not right. We in the league too. We’re National Football players. We got a team too. We go out there, and we sweat and work hard too. I don’t give a crap about the name. We are players. We’ve got feelings too, and we want to win too.”
Hatcher said he wasn’t trying to be disrespectful with his comments, but he felt it would’ve been a different ballgame had Culliver’s touchdown stood.
“Helluva of a football play by Cully — made the tackle and made the interception,” Hatcher said. “But the game is in the hands of the refs.”
Hatcher continued the conversation on his Instagram account by posting a picture of Culliver’s illegal hit with the caption, “I’m done being quiet. Freedom of speech right? We done being slaves to this league. Just be quiet don’t say nothing. We have to earn the respect of this league respect before we can get the call. Blah blah blah. We put in work too just like everyone else. This is the NFL right? Act like it!! We give up our bodies up and take years off our life for our brother that we sweat and bleed with during the week to get screwed by a call. Don’t punish us for something we can’t control. We are the redskins let’s move on. God forgive so should yall. Everyone’s accountable!!!”
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