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    Leonard Fournette’s block on Micah Parsons ignited a debate over NFL guidelines and security

    Heading into their recreation in opposition to the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday evening, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and their offensive teaching employees knew they wanted a plan for the gifted Micah Parsons. Final season’s Defensive Rookie of the Yr is a pressure on the linebacker place each in protection and as a cross rusher, and Tampa Bay knew they needed to account for him each time he got here after quarterback Tom Brady.

    One such play from that recreation touched off a disagreement on-line, and a debate over how the NFL views participant security in relation to defensive gamers.

    Late within the first half, Brady related with veteran Julio Jones on a deep cross alongside the suitable facet of the sphere. Nevertheless it was not the completion that drew essentially the most consideration, however quite the chip block from Leonard Fournette on Parsons as he rushed off the left edge:

    Parsons rushes off the left edge, working in opposition to reserve left sort out Josh Wells. Wells was within the recreation after beginning sort out Donovan Smith left as a consequence of an elbow damage. With Parsons working in opposition to a backup, the Buccaneers determine to present Wells assist, within the type of Fournette chipping on Parsons. The chip block caught the eye of the Twitter timeline, after which Parsons after the sport, who used some … colourful language in response:

    Now go watch the tape! And see what happenned when it was me and him one on one!!! You hit somebody not trying you straight pus**y !! Cease hyping this weak as* shit it’s soccer!!

    — Micah Parsons (@MicahhParsons11) September 12, 2022

    The clip additionally drew the eye of cross rusher Von Miller, who made the case that it was a harmful block that lets “the offense tee off on our marquee cross rushers:”

    This block have to be taken out the sport ! That is the longer term and we’re simply letting the offense tee off on our marquee cross rushers! You may get the job accomplished with out this a lot contact!

    — Von Miller (@VonMiller) September 12, 2022

    There are guidelines in place the place the league protects defenders from chop blocks, the place an offensive participant goes low right into a defender whereas the defender is already engaged with one other blocker above the waist. In accordance with the NFL’s rulebook, all such blocks are unlawful, except the contact is initiated above the waist, or if the contact is “incidental.” On this play, nonetheless, Fournette stays above the waist.

    Nonetheless, Parsons and Miller make the case that with the defender engaged, and his eyes within the backfield, this type of block is harmful and dangers the “future” of the league. Miller, like many defensive gamers, factors out that whereas the NFL at all times appears to be like for methods to guard offensive gamers — particularly quarterbacks — it isn’t usually the case that defensive gamers obtain the identical safety.

    Ought to such a rule change be coming? As a washed-up former quarterback a number of months older than Brady, I’m of the thoughts that something that may be accomplished throughout the present guidelines to gradual these guys down off the sting, together with authorized chip blocks like this one from Fournette, are factor. Maybe my pricey mates on the defensive facet of the soccer might disagree.

    As for Fournette himself, he was not silent concerning the play on social media, responding with a easy GIF:

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