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NFL should suspend Dunta Robinson for his flagrant hit

September 19, 2011 |  9:36 am

There is no question the NFL should suspend Atlanta’s Dunta Robinson for his brutal helmet-to-helmet hit Sunday night on Philadelphia receiver Jeremy Maclin.

The only question: Why wasn’t Robinson immediately ejected?

The hit came midway through the third quarter when Maclin had made a catch and was running across the middle of the field. Replays clearly showed Robinson launching at him with his head, and bashing his helmet into the side of Maclin’s. Robinson was flagged for unnecessary roughness, a 15-yard penalty.

Maclin was slow to his feet but was able to return to the game.

The NFL is reviewing the hit, which is a textbook violation of the league’s launching ban. This off-season the league said it would reserve the right to suspend flagrant offenders. Last season Robinson was fined $50,000 for a similar hit on Eagles receiver DeSean Jackson. That fine was later reduced to $25,000.

After Sunday’s game, Jackson said of Robinson: “I guess that’s what type of player he is. He tries to go for the kill shot and things like that. He got a flag for it, so I’m just glad Jeremy is OK.”

Not surprisingly, Robinson argued that the hit was legal and said he feels “strongly” that the league won’t react further.

Here’s hoping he’s wrong.

Note: A previous version of this post misspelled Robinson's first name as Danta in the headline.


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Photo: Atlanta's Dunta Robinson would be penalized for leading with his helmet on this tackle of Philadelphia's Jeremy Maclin. Credit: Scott Cunningham / Getty Images