NFL Officiating: Hit that Concussed Dallas Goedert was Legal

Nick Sirianni didn’t want to go after Broncos safety Justin Simmons, who concussed tight end Dallas Goedert with a blow to the head during the first half of Sunday’s 30-13 win. The Eagles’ head coach said on Monday he wasn’t “here to ever question the integrity of another player,” noting that bang-bang plays happen all the time in the NFL.

The league more or less said the same thing, when senior vice president of officiating administration Perry Fewell analyzed the play. It starts around 0:37 of this clip:

Fewell, in part:

“…Philadelphia’s 88 received the ball and began to advance down the field. Denver 21 attempted to tackle Philadelphia 88, who began to lose his balance. Then Denver 31 made a hit on the ball carrier with his shoulder. When a receiver is clearly a runner, and moving with the ball, it is only a foul if the defender lowers his head and initiates contact with his helmet. It is not a foul for a shoulder-to-helmet hit on the runner unless he is down or out of bounds.”

That’s the explanation most people seemed to expect, and accept. Simmons does put his head down, but the first contact appears to come with the shoulder and not the helmet.

Goedert was concussed on the play and placed in the protocol.