Buffalo Bills reserve offensive lineman Bobby Hart has been suspended without pay for one game for violating unsportsmanlike conduct rules after Monday’s game against the Tennessee Titans in which he threw a punch at a Titans player and struck the head of a Tennessee coach.
Hart, per the NFL statement, violated Rule 12, Section 3, Article 1, which applies to “any act which is contrary to the generally understood principles of sportsmanship including throwing a punch at an opponent.”
NFL Vice Price of Football Operations Jon Runyan, in a letter sent to Hart and included in the league statement, wrote: “As both teams were heading to the tunnel, you walked directly across the field to seek out your opponent. You approached him near the end zone and a coach had to hold you back as others shook hands. Once you and your opponent were in the end zone near the tunnel, you confronted him and immediately swung at him with a closed fist, striking the head of a Tennessee coach. Your aggressive conduct could have caused serious injury and clearly does not reflect the high standards of sportsmanship expected of a professional.”
In Monday’s game, which the Bills won, 41-7, Hart played 24 snaps. The 28-year-old guard, who was a seventh-round pick of the New York Giants in 2015, is in his ninth NFL season and second with Buffalo. He split time last year with the Titans and Bills.
Hart is due to miss Sunday’s Bills-Miami Dolphins game and is qualified to return to Buffalo’s active roster on Monday. Hart is eligible to appeal the suspension under the collective bargaining agreement.
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