FOXBORO, Mass. — As reporters entered the New England Patriots’ locker room Sunday afternoon, several Patriots defensive backs were huddled around safety Patrick Chung’s locker, staring intently at Chung’s iPhone screen.
They weren’t watching one of the awe-inspiring runs Dion Lewis had during the 26-6 Patriots victory, or the powerful hit James Harrison laid on New York Jets wide receiver Robby Anderson in the linebacker’s New England debut.
They were watching Johnson Bademosi, who should be receiving his Academy Award any day now for the performance he delivered on New England’s sideline.
The scene: After failing to haul in a pass during the third quarter and slipping to the ground near the Patriots’ bench, Anderson spiked the ball on the ground in frustration. It bounced off the frozen turf and directly into the facemask of Bademosi, who paused for a moment before unleashing a flop that would make Marcus Smart blush.
Bademosi’s teammates couldn’t get enough of it.
“Flop of the year!” safety Duron Harmon exclaimed after the game. “Flop of the year, man. Hey, man, he was just trying to do something good for the team, I guess. But that’s definitely going to be on ‘SportsCenter’ for a long time.”
“He sold it,” cornerback Jonathan Jones told MassLive.com’s Kevin Dillon. “Maybe a little too late, but he definitely sold it. He’s got some acting skills. I’ll tell him to try acting next year.”
“He tried to pull a little NBA action,” cornerback Eric Rowe told Dillon. “A little flop action. I thought it was funny, though.”
Linebackers Kyle Van Noy and Shea McClellin both offered their thoughts on Twitter, with McClellin, who currently is on injured reserve, doing so before the game even ended.
So, what exactly was going through Bademosi’s mind when Anderson’s spike nailed him in the face? He explained in a highly entertaining postgame interview with Steve Burton of WBZ-TV.
“All of the sudden, I got weak on one side,” the cornerback said. “… It’s not a decision. It just kind of happens.”
Thumbnail photo via David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports Images
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