NEW DELHI: Denver Broncos
safety Kareem Jackson
finds himself in the midst of controversy once again. After returning from a two-game suspension, Jackson is now facing another four-game suspension without pay for repeated violations of player safety rules following an incident in the recent 21-20 victory over the Minnesota Vikings
, through vice president of football operations Jon Runyan
, delivered the suspension, citing a serious violation of playing rules during a play where Jackson made forcible contact with Vikings quarterback Joshua Dobbs.Despite having an unobstructed path to his opponent, Jackson’s hit was deemed illegal and avoidable.
The letter from Runyan stated, ” Illegal acts that are flagrant and jeopardize the safety of players will not be tolerated. The League will continue to stress enforcement of the rules that prohibit using your helmet to make forcible contact with your opponent. On the play in question, you lowered your head and delivered a forceful blow to the shoulder and head/neck area of an opponent when you had time and space to avoid such contact. You could have made contact with your opponent within the rules, yet you chose not to.”
Jackson, who had just served a two-game suspension (originally four, reduced upon appeal), was not penalized for the hit on Dobbs. He plans to appeal this latest suspension, as reported by ESPN on Monday night. The safety is eligible to return to the active roster after the Week 15 game against the Detroit Lions on Dec. 17.
This marks Jackson’s second ejection of the season, the previous one occurring in Denver’s victory over the Green Bay Packers on Oct. 22. In that instance, he hit Packers tight end Luke Musgrave on the sideline. The earlier ejection resulted in Jackson missing games against the Kansas City Chiefs and the Buffalo Bills.
Throughout the season, Jackson has already faced fines totaling $89,670 and lost an additional $279,000 in salary for missing two games. Notably, he was also ejected in Week 2 for a hit on Washington Commanders tight end Logan Thomas, who suffered a concussion as a result.
Despite the controversies, Jackson has been productive on the field, recording nine tackles against the Vikings and accumulating 51 tackles, two interceptions, and three passes defended in eight games this season. The 35-year-old safety is in his 14th season in the NFL and his fifth with the Denver Broncos after spending nine seasons with the Houston Texans. His career stats include 952 tackles, 22 interceptions (three returned for touchdowns), and seven fumble recoveries (one returned for a score).(With Reuters inputs)