Tampa Bay Buccaneers free safety Dashon Goldson will appeal his one-game suspension that would have him missing the Week 3 contest against the New England Patriots, according to a tweet from Roy Cummings of the Tampa Tribune. Goldson was suspended by the league yesterday after a vicious helmet-to-helmet hit on New Orleans Saints scat back Darren Sproles, but Goldson wasn’t suspended for that hit alone; players don’t get suspended for just one hit. The league was sick of Goldson constantly making hard hits in the head region, and he has been fined multiple times by the league in the past few years. In fact, Goldson has been flagged 15 times since 2010 for personal foul penalties, and he was fined $30,000 in Week 1.
But despite Goldson’s track record and proclivity towards dirty hits, it is unprecedented to actually suspend a player on those grounds. Dashon Goldson is certainly smart for at least trying an appeal here, and the Buccaneers will definitely hope he can play against the Patriots. Even though the Patriots passing offense isn’t looking good right now, Rob Gronkowski could very well be ready, and the drop-off between Goldson and Ahmad Black is significant enough that the Bucs should be worried about their coverage. If Goldson can’t play, then the Bucs would have some serious questions.
I think Goldson should be punished severely, but it seems weird that he is the one getting suspended and not Brandon Meriweather. I’ve seen just as bad hits on a consistent basis from Meriweather, who is the definition of a dirty player (just about the only thing he does well in this league is hit hard). His hit on Eddie Lacy was uncalled for, and he even celebrated after concussing the rookie running back. Either both Meriweather and Goldson should be suspended, or neither should be suspended.
It’s not fair to see Dashon Goldson get suspended while Brandon Meriweather simply walks away unscathed.