The Pittsburgh Steelers have a history with Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict.
Most recently, Burfict knocked star receiver Antonio Brown out of the playoffs with a dirty hit that cost Burfict the first three games of the 2016 season. It was clear Sunday that Burfict hasn’t learned his lesson after he created headlines with a couple of dirty plays against the New England Patriots.
The first infraction was discovered during Sunday’s game, when Burfict was caught diving at Martellus Bennett’s legs away from the play. Patriots teammate Rob Gronkowski took exception to that malicious hit and eventually was flagged for taunting Burfict and the Bengals after a reception. Two days later, ESPN’s Mike Reiss discovered that Burfict tried to stomp on LaGarrette Blount’s leg as the bruising tailback was getting up out of a pile.
Nobody knows Burfict’s nasty ways more than the Steelers. Offensive guard Ramon Foster chewed Burfict out and demanded discipline from the league,
“There’s no place for that, man,” Foster said, according to KDKA in Pittsburgh. “To continuously do it – one or two times, okay I get it, but every single time? A stake has to be driven into the ground on this guy and I’m not sure what they care about, touchdown celebrations or player safety, but something has to be done.”
Foster said Burfict’s behavior is simply inexplicable and quite frankly he has a point. Burfict already has a reputation for being a dirty player and truly doesn’t deserve the benefit of the doubt. The question is whether the league will act upon these actions, or continue to prioritize penalizing players for dancing.