If Richard Seymour Can’t Control Himself, He Shouldn’t Play
Yesterday the Oakland Raiders lost to the New England Patriots. When I first saw the 2011 NFL schedule, I more or less thought this was going to be a game the Raiders lost. Not that yesterday's loss didn't bother me. It did, but for different reasons.
My favorite team is the Oakland Raiders. My second favorite team is whoever is playing the New England Patriots.
The biggest disappointment yesterday was the play of Richard Seymour. He didn't play or act like the all-pro defensive lineman the Raiders gave up so much to get, ironically enough, in a trade with the New England Patriots. It's not that he and his defensive line teammates failed to control the line of scrimmage (they didn't), it was that he couldn't stop himself from getting stupid, unnecessary penalties against his former team.
The most ridiculous example of this was in the first quarter. The Raiders were up 3-0 and the Patriots were on their own 21 yard line. On a third down play, quarterback Tom Brady was flagged for delay of game. Instead of pushing that Pats back even further, they were awarded 15 yards and a first down. The reason? Because Seymour couldn't control himself. Even though the play was whistled dead, Seymour pretended it wasn't and picked up Brady and threw him down to the ground like he was a bad habit..
Dumb, dumb, dumb.
On the same drive, Seymour was called for a 15-yard face-mask penalty. The Patriots went on to score a touchdown. Richard Seymour was a big reason for that. He gave the Pats 30 yards and two first downs on the scoring drive.
The Patriots need freebie first downs like Troy Polamalu needs hair extensions.
Seymour finished the game with three tackles and three penalties, though one of those penalties was declined by the Pats. Considering his play yesterday, the Raiders would have been better off if Seymour had not played.
Seymour shouldn't be getting stupid penalties. He's not some fifth-round journeyman. Earlier this year, he agreed to a two-year, $30 million contract extension. He's the highest paid defensive player in the NFL and in a big game against a good team, he played like a journeyman. A really bad journeyman.