Continued from page 1

And Peterson’s reaction to the situation surprised Hall because of what he heard on the field when it happened.

“After the play he actually said to me, ‘That’s a good play, D-Hall. That’s a good play,’” he said. “That’s why, had he really been talking trash to me face to face and me talking trash, I think you guys know my reaction would’ve been a little different than what it was.”

Paul makes impact

Niles Paul already made his presence felt on special teams Sunday, downing a punt by Sav Rocca at Minnesota’s 4-yard line. But Paul’s play of the game was a monstrous hit on punt returner Marcus Sherels.

With 6:18 left in the fourth quarter, Sherels settled under a punt at the Minnesota 35 as Paul torpedoed toward him. Paul drilled Sherels back two yards, knocking his helmet off in the process.

“At that point in time, I say, ‘I’ve got to make this tackle.’ He didn’t fair-catch the ball, and that’s his fault,” Paul said. “I took my shot, I led with my shoulder. I felt like I made a good play.”

So did the officials, who did not throw a flag on the punishing hit.

“I felt like it was a clean hit. I let him catch the ball,” Paul said. “If I’d have waited any longer, he’d have been up the middle and impossible to make a play. So I just took a shot.”

Former NFL vice president of officiating Mike Pereira agreed. Now a rules analyst for Fox Sports, he often posts on Twitter about questionable plays.

“He was not defenseless therefore there is no foul,” Pereira wrote. “He already caught the kick.”