Bills, Patriots, Officials Have Differing Opinions On Josh Allen Hit


ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — Bills quarterback Josh Allen appeared to get knocked out cold after taking a helmet-to-helmet hit from Patriots cornerback Jonathan Jones in the fourth quarter of New England’s 16-10 win over Buffalo. Allen left the game with a head injury, while Jones stayed in.

The Patriots defender was flagged for unnecessary roughness but not ejected. Since the Bills also were flagged for holding on the play, the penalties offset.

Bills head coach Sean McDermott took umbrage with the officials’ decision, saying he believed Jones should have been booted from the game. McDermott also announced Allen is in concussion protocol.

“It’s disappointing because there’s no room for that kind of play in the NFL,” McDermott said Sunday.

NFL Senior Vice President of Officiating Al Riveron, who reviewed the play in the league’s New York office, explained why Jones was not ejected.

“Well, we looked at it and in this situation, we didn’t feel that that contact rose to the level of an ejection,” Riveron told Bills pools reporter Vic Carucci. “The player (Allen) actually turns. Obviously, there is helmet contact, but we have standards for an ejection, and this did not rise to that standard; therefore, we did not eject him. There was a foul called and obviously the penalty stood, but we did not feel this contact rose to that level.”

Jones said after the game there was no intent to injure Allen.

“We were just flying around playing football,” Jones said.

Patriots safety Devin McCourty explained the play from his perspective, defending his teammate.

“It’s a bang-bang play,” McCourty said. “I know you guys watched it. The guy’s (Allen) running, he’s leaning forward trying to get a first down. Duron (Harmon) wraps up his legs, J. Jones is just trying to make sure he doesn’t get the first down.”

You can watch the play here and here. Jones does appear to try to lead with his shoulder, though their helmets make contact.

Thumbnail photo via Douglas DeFelice/USA TODAY Sports Images

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