Double standard over Tom Brady's slide

January, 21, 2013
1/21/13
6:20
PM ET
OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Ravens safety Bernard Pollard believes Patriots quarterback Tom Brady should be punished by the NFL for lifting his right leg and hitting Ravens safety Ed Reed while sliding late in the first half.

Brady
"He knew what he was doing," Pollard said Monday. "So, I'm the type of player -- it has to go both ways. It really does. It has to go both ways. Hopefully, the NFL will do something about it."

When I watched the replays, the way Brady raised his leg made it look intentional to me. At the very least, it put the idea in your head that he was trying to make contact with Reed. The problem is there's no way to prove intent. No one knows what Brady is thinking (especially when it comes to those Ugg commercials, but I digress).

Brady is a football player and not a baseball one, so it's easy to argue that his sliding technique is going to be far from perfect. This reminds me of the Thanksgiving incident where Matt Schaub got a kick to the groin from Ndamukong Suh. Of course, the league couldn't prove intent with Suh, but it still fined him $30,000.

That's where Pollard has a point about the double standard. You know what would have happened if Reed wasn't able to pull up like he did and landed on Brady. Reed likely would've been penalized for making contact with a quarterback after he slid. It should not come as a shock to anyone that the league's priority is to protect quarterbacks.

"I think for me, as a player, we all know emotions are on the field," Pollard said. "We're going to say things. We're going to do things, but, when it's all said and done, if you want to keep the game clean, if you want to keep this thing going in the right direction, everybody needs to be penalized for their actions."

But Pollard shouldn't get his hopes up about the NFL fining Brady. I would be surprised if it did.

Jamison Hensley

ESPN Ravens reporter

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