Tampa Bay Buccaneers receiver Mike Evans and New Orleans Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore were ejected for their roles in the brawl at the end of their Sunday night clash – and it is not the first time the duo have gone head-to-head.
The Bucs struggled through large portions of the contest but came away 20-10 winners at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome to secure Tom Brady’s first regular season win over New Orleans since joining Tampa Bay in 2019. The quarterback threw for 190 yards and a score but was without his star wideout at the end of the game.
The match marked the second time Evans has been ejected from a game for sending Lattimore to the floor after he did so in 2017. On Sunday, an incomplete pass saw Brady yell at the referees which drew frustration from Lattimore.
READ MORE: Tom Brady complaint sparks NFL brawl with punches thrown and bodies flying everywhere
As Lattimore responded, running back Leonard Fournette stepped in and shoved the defensive back, who shoved back. Suddenly, Evans came barrelling in from near the sideline and knocked Lattimore off his feet.
Saints safety Marcus Maye then tried to grab Evans, but the receiver slammed him to the turf while both were engulfed by a swarm of players from both teams. Officials conferred and elected to assess offsetting personal fouls on just Evans and Lattimore before ejecting both.
Evans argued his ejection, telling officials: “That’s Tom Brady. What do you want me to do?”
Speaking after the game, he suggested it gets ’spicy’ in New Orleans when the NFC South rivals clash. He added: “I know we were trying to get a flag called and he wasn’t calling it.
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“All I see is Lattimore — he punched (Leonard Fournette) in the face or something like that. Then, like, pushed Tom (Brady). That’s all I saw. I just pushed him.”
Lattimore and Evans have somewhat of a grudge rivalry since 2017. Evans defended former quarterback Jameis Winston – ironically the Saints signal-caller on Sunday – after Lattimore pushed him back then, with the receiver sending him to the turf before he was ejected.
In 2020, the duo were involved in a shoving match that led to Evans knocking the cornerback’s helmet off.
On Monday, the NFL announced it had suspended Evans for one game for ‘violations of unnecessary roughness and unsportsmanlike conduct rules’. According to ESPN, fines are also set to be awarded to each player but Evans is the only one to receive a suspension .
The 29-year-old will now miss the Bucs’ Week 3 clash against the Green Bay Packers. He is expected to appeal the ruling.
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