The hot topic all week at Redskins Park has been the suspension of safety Brandon Meriweather by the NFL for a pair of illegal hits against Chicago last week.
Some of Meriweather’s teammates questioned whether the first illegal hit on Bears wide receiver Alshon Jeffery should have been called. They were less sure about the second hit in the end zone on a defenseless Brandon Meriweather.
Still, Chicago’s players were upset with Meriweather, whose well-documented attempts to curb his illegal hits have fallen short. He didn’t quite get as much support from defensive coordinator Jim Haslett during his Thursday chat with reporters at Redskins Park.
“I was more concerned with the style with which [Meriweather] was tackling more than the fine or whatever,” Haslett said. “I’m concerned with him doing a better job of wrapping those arms, bringing a guy down, not launching.”
It’s not for lack of trying. Meriweather is aware he needs to change. He was already fined $42,000 earlier this season for an illegal hit against Green Bay – one of two in that game. And his track record is long and checkered. The NFL finally had enough, though the original two-game suspension was whittled to one on an appeals process Wednesday. Meriweather can play on Nov. 3 against San Diego.
“We do a good job teaching our guys what the league is asking you to do from that standpoint, but obviously it didn’t work in his case,” Haslett said. “So we’ve got to do better because we’ve got to eliminate the penalties because that hurt us more than anything from a team standpoint last week.”