Ryan Clark is well-respected around the league, but he doesn't always respect its decisions. Clark didn't mince words while slamming the NFL's two-game suspension of Brandon Meriweather.
"Meriweather delivered a forceful blow to the head and neck area of a defenseless receiver with no attempt to wrap up or make a conventional tackle of this player," according to newly minted NFL Executive Vice President of Football Operations, Troy Vincent.
Clark first took issue with the regular-season punishment for Meriweather's preseason penalty. "We're talking about a preseason game which has gotten a starter for our team suspended for the first two games of the season," Clark said. "It almost makes you say 'why play preseason games?'" The veteran raised the possibility of defensive players approaching preseason play cautiously for fear of league discipline.
Clark also called out Troy Vincent for involving a personal agenda in the discipline process. "I think Troy Vincent played [the game] softly," he said, then went on to imply that Vincent hasn't exercised his new powers with restraint.
Second-year cornerback David Amerson admitted that he's not clear on where the line between legal and illegal hits will be drawn, especially as the definition of legal contact seems to be narrowing. "It's a hard time to be coming into the league right now for a DB," he said.
Though coach Jay Gruden began training camp critical of Meriweather's high tackling, even he came to the safety's defense. Gruden said he believes Meriweather attempted to lower his target and that he hopes the suspension will be reduced or dismissed.
Check out the full comments by Jay Gruden, Ryan Clark and David Amerson here: