FOXBOROUGH -- It wouldn’t be Jets-Patriots week without a little bit of controversial trash talking. It almost always comes from the New York side, and has again this week.
Sheldon Richardson, a rookie defensive lineman who has 2½ sacks and 11 quarterback hits, told the New York Post that the NFL coddles Tom Brady, noting the rule against hitting quarterbacks low was created after Brady suffered a season-ending knee injury in 2008.
Richardson also shared an exchange he had with a referee during Week 2 when the Patriots beat the Jets, 13-10, at Gillette Stadium.
“I remember a play, a referee made it his business to tell me I was too close to hitting him,” Richardson told the Post. “I got close to him, shoved him a little bit, the referee said, ‘I could’ve threw the flag on you for that.’ ”
Richardson said he replied: “He didn’t even fall.”
The referee’s response, according to Richardson: “It doesn’t matter.”
The Post had some fun with the story on its back page, putting Brady’s face on a baby’s body and sticking him in a crib. The headline said, “Rock A-Bye Brady: Jets rook says NFL babies Tommy.”
Richardson didn’t stop there. He was asked about some of the Patriots’ on-field tactics.
“It’s on film," he said. "Go back and watch. You’re going to see a lot of stuff, man, that the Patriots can do to you, that they get away with, that we can’t do to the Patriots. It’s just the way it is.”