As the game ended for the Atlanta Falcons, the players celebrated as they won a tight contest against the Buffalo Bills in overtime with Matt Bryant kicking the game-winning field goal that put the final score at 34-31. With everybody relaxed a little after winning their first road game of the year, safety William Moore was nervous as he has been racking up fines this season.
The referee assessed Moore with a personal foul for unnecessary roughness against Bills wide receiver Robert Woods on a controversial call saying that Moore’s hit was too high.
Head coach Mike Smith was a little nervous about his hard-hitting safety and if he would be available to play in their upcoming game against the Green Bay Packers. As Moore has already been fined four times this season alone, a fifth one could have been issued to Moore. On top of being fined, Moore could also have gotten suspended, but seems that the league will not suspend the safety. Coach Smith told ESPN:
“William practiced fully, and we fully anticipate him playing in the game this weekend. William plays the game like it’s supposed to be played. There are some bang-bang plays that happen, especially in the secondary. And we will continue to work with him on targeting the ‘strike zone’ which is above the knee and below the shoulders.”
With the new rules of cracking down on defensive players who like to dish out big hits, Moore has been on the unlucky side of things as he continues to get penalized for hits that he thinks are perfectly fine. With that being said, Moore also acknowledged that he will do his best to hit within the “strike” zone which is above the knees and aim for the chest. Moore said:
“Just playing football, man. Whatever happens, happens. I guess I’ve got to work on the way I hit and try to fit into the rules. I’m not frustrated at all, because they set the rules way before the season. And I’ve got follow by them. I’m not special.”
Moore’s four fines for illegal hits have come out to a total of $74, 550.
With Moore getting attention from several referees, he will have to be careful or risk getting suspended for a game for repeating the violence. If Moore wants to avoid racking up his fines he will need to learn whatever the NFL deems the “right” way to tackle.