Heated joint practices are commonplace in the NFL.
But when helmets fly and punches land, they make headlines. Such was the case on Thursday when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers hosted the Tennessee Titans. Antonio Brown was in the middle of it.
The Bucs receiver left practice Thursday morning after getting into it with Titans defensive back Chris Jackson. The Tampa Bay Times' Rick Stroud reports that Brown ripped Jackson's helmet off during a one-on-one drill. Brown was agitated after an incompletion in the end zone, telling Jackson "Don’t hold me out here," according to Stroud. Jackson responded: "Don’t push me in my face.”
That's when things escalated.
Photos from the scuffle confirmed the report. They also show Brown landing a clean left hook to Jackson's jaw.
— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) August 19, 2021
Coaches and teammates intervened, and Brown left the field to cool off. Stroud reports that Brown later returned to practice for seven-on-seven drills.
Titan taken down 'suplex style'
That wasn't the only altercation of the day as the teams conducted their second joint practice in Florida heat that approached the mid-90s. According to Stroud, there were several "skirmishes" including one where Bucs linebacker Devin White appeared "to take down a Titan suplex style."
“Great practice," White told reporters with a smile on his face. "A lot of grown men, competing with emotions. Things happen. Just gotta protect your brothers.
"I was just trying help one of my brothers. I just seen one of my brothers getting tossed around, so I just tried to help him. That’s all.”
Bucs running back Leonard Fournette and center Ryan Jensen and Titans defensive tackle Jeffery Simmons also got into extracurricular action, per the report.
Must've been quite the swarm of flies 👀 pic.twitter.com/digWnQkOIS
— Sports by Tampa Bay Times (@TBTimes_Sports) August 19, 2021
As for Bucs head coach Bruce Arians? He didn't see a thing. So he says.
"Fighting?" Arians responded when asked about the action on the practice field. "I didn't see any fighting. Lot of pushing and shoving, but I didn't see any fists thrown."
But what about Brown's left hook?
"Nah, no. Waving flies."
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