Cowboys right tackle La’el Collins was not even in uniform last October when the man he should have been protecting was shot down by a low blow during the team’s 2020 visit to Washington. . He was watching on TV when quarterback Andy Dalton was shot in the head in the middle of WFT linebacker Jon Bostic’s slide, a move that knocked Bostic out but saw no response from the offensive line. Dallas.
So when Washington linebacker William Bradley-King pushed Dak Prescott out of bounds on Sunday and then fell dangerously close to the passer’s reconstructed ankle, Collins wasn’t about to let go. As running back Ezekiel Elliott pushed on the defender, Collins came into power with a thunderclap to the body.
“It wasn’t really the late move for me” Collins said after. “It was more true, I felt like he was rolling towards Dak’s legs and stuff like that.” It was unwarranted. I’m just there to protect my quarterback at all costs, and that’s the bottom line. “
WFT got 15 free yards on the personal foul and Collins was ejected from the game. This forced the Cowboys to make a save for the remainder of the fourth quarter as Washington tried to make a furious comeback. But in the moments after the Cowboys recovered a seven-point victory, Collins received public attacks from his quarterback and head coach.
“I’m just trying to do a play,” Prescott told reporters in a press conference on Sunday. âI had the impression that it was close, on call. I turned around just to look at the ref and saw that there was a lot going on. I can’t say I saw any details or know exactly what happened, but I obviously respect and love that my teammates are standing up for me. This is exactly how we all feel about each other. They just aren’t the ones protecting me, but that’s how any of us would protect any of our brothers and teammates in this position. Yeah, I’m thankful for these guys.
“I think LC did exactly what you’re supposed to do there”, Mike McCarthy said in his post-game remarks. âWe understand all the challenges of officiating, no matter what you think of the game all around. It’s a game and obviously very competitive. The fact that it’s your quarterback, or anyone else. You know these games will be chippy; these are division matches.
La’el Collins is sent off for throwing a late-play punch after a suspected late hit to his QB. (It was not late.) pic.twitter.com/NuwDtGIs06
– Fá´á´á´Êá´ÊÊ Zá´ÊÊá´s (@footballzebras) 12 December 2021
McCarthy’s use of the phrase “whatever you think of the room all around” is key. (Even Prescott thought “it was close, on roll call.”) Because the hit on Prescott wasn’t late. And Bradley-King didn’t seem like trying to run over Prescott at all.
But when Washington and Dallas come together, such details often don’t matter. Any excuse to start a little something with a member of the hated rivals.
It should also be remembered that Prescott came to Collins’ defense earlier this season as the lineman appealed his five-game suspension for attempting to bribe a drug test sample collector from the league. So if there was one Cowboys player who was going to get Prescott’s back – even on a completely legal push out of bounds – it would naturally be Collins.
McCarthy will praise the show of team unity, penalty and expulsion or not. He even seemed to smile a little when it happened. And he said last year that his players were not responding to Dalton’s brutal blow.
Collins is likely to be fined by the league. And Prescott might step in to tick the check as a thank you.
âI just told him I appreciate him,â Prescott said. âI told him right then, as they took him out of the game. I told him how I felt about him as a brother and a teammate, and I just repeated it in the locker room.
For Collins, it was a message he may have been waiting for a long time to deliver in Washington, since that day last October when no one came to the defense of a Cowboys passer at FedEx Field.
“I was at home, in my bed, when I saw this room [on Dalton]âCollins recalled on Sunday. “Dude, that just pissed me off. It made me feel kind of a way. You don’t take cheap shots on guys. We don’t play that kind of game. We just line it up, and we go over there, and we play ball. We don’t play dirty, we don’t do any of that. But at the end of the day we’re not gonna take any [expletive]. “
And that’s a message the Cowboys loyalists are happy to see their team finally spread to the rest of the league.
Expect it to be rebroadcast in two weeks when Washington heads to AT&T Stadium for the rematch.