PRO FOOTBALL: Finneran hit, Mora remarks irk Broncos
Matt Winkeljohn - Staff
Tuesday, November 2, 2004
Some Denver players were unhappy Monday when told of Falcons coach Jim Mora's reaction to the play in Sunday's game against Atlanta that knocked safety John Lynch out for two to four weeks with a stress fracture in his lower back.
Lynch, a perennial Pro Bowl player, was injured when Falcons wide receiver Brian Finneran blocked him. Lynch was seen yelling at Finneran as he left the field.
One week ago, the Broncos were involved in a high-profile flap after right tackle George Foster's legal cut block broke the left ankle of Bengals defensive lineman Tony Williams.
Mora was asked at his Monday news conference about the play.
"It was a nice play by Brian. Just an aggressive play . . . and John's a friend of mine, and I've known him for a long time . . . and I don't like seeing him get hurt," Mora said. "But it was a clean play."
When told some Denver players thought it was a cheap play, Mora said, "That's good. That's fine. They had one last week that a lot of people in the league thought was cheap, so I guess what goes around comes around."
Some Broncos told the Denver Post they were surprised by Mora's comments.
Cornerback Champ Bailey: "That's brutal. A coach shouldn't say those things."
Safety Nick Ferguson: "That's unexpected from a coach. That's all I'll say."
Linebacker Al Wilson: "OK, if what goes around comes around, be ready then. I just hope it doesn't happen to any of his guys."
Denver coach Mike Shanahan said Monday, "It wasn't below the waist or anything --- it was a legal shot. He came after [Lynch], and it was one of those blind-side shots that kind of catches you off guard. It was a legal shot."