Jameis Winston was replaced by Ryan Fitzpatrick against the New Orleans Saints due to a shoulder injury, but he still managed to instigate a fight between cornerback Marshon Lattimore and Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans.
While on the sideline, Winston poked the back of Lattimore’s helmet. That certainly wasn’t enough to cause a melee, but Evans came flying in to defend his quarterback and drilled the Saints cornerback, and chaos ensued.
Dirk Koetter was not pleased.
Koetter says it was “totally unacceptable behavior” from Winston and Evans in altercation with Saints’ Marshon Lattimore.— Greg Auman (@gregauman) November 6, 2017
No players were ejected on the play, but the Buccaneers were assessed a 15-yard penalty for unnecessary roughness on Evans. Koetter said Evans should probably have been ejected, and he wouldn’t be surprised if the wide receiver faces discipline from the league.
Koetter was right: Evans was suspended for one game. Winston received a relatively small fine for his contribution to the fight.
NFL fined Buccaneers QB Jameis Winston $12,154 for poking Saints CB Marshon Lattimore, per league source.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 9, 2017
After the game, Winston told reporters he was telling Lattimore to go to the sideline and said that Evans was just trying to defend his quarterback.
QB Jameis Winston spoke with members of the media following Sunday's game against the Saints. pic.twitter.com/AAOVoKCr8E— Tampa Bay Buccaneers (@TBBuccaneers) November 5, 2017
It has been a frustrating season for the Buccaneers who fell to 2-6 with a blowout loss to the Saints.
Tampa Bay was lucky that the fight on the sideline didn’t result in an ejection, but it could end up costing Winston and/or Evans when the NFL doles out punishments later in the week.