"It wasn't like nobody didn't know that was going to happen in the first place."
Joint practices during the NFL preseason are a breeding ground for team vs team brawls and Sunday's between the New York Jets and Washington Redskins wasn't a surprise at all, according to Redskins corner back Josh Norman.
ESPN reports that there were several altercations during the Jets and Redskins' joint practice, particularly between the Redskins' offense and Jets' defense. The biggest brawl, which nearly spilled over into the crowd of fans in attendance, broke out when Redskins offensive tackle Morgan Moses was allegedly hit with a cheap shot during a running play.
On another hot, humid day here, tempers already were on edge when Redskins running back Chris Thompson ran around the right end. Redskins tackle Morgan Moses, running to his right, blocked corner Trumaine Johnson and then shoved him to the ground as Thompson ran past.
But at the end of the play, Moses lay bent over, staring at the ground, the victim of an apparent cheap shot.
A scuffle then broke out among a small group of players, and the numbers quickly increased as many tried to pull teammates away. Redskins tackle Trent Williams then walked over and shoved a Jets player and a melee ensued, with the players spilling over near the crowd, separated from the field by a rope. As some players threw punches, coaches tried to pull players aside.
"It wasn't like nobody didn't know that was going to happen in the first place," Redskins cornerback Norman said. "You have these joint practices, you expect it to happen. You get guys trying to come out and get some good work. Some guys do things that other guys don't like. That's kind of what happens.
"Guys don't like that kind of stuff. They took it in their own hands, and I guess melees happen."
New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles had this to say of the melee, "Fights are not to be tolerated in pads. We're not trying to fight them and they're not trying to fight us. If they want to be boxers and wrestlers, they probably would be in another sport. We're trying to get better and they're trying to get better. Some things happen. Overzealousness. I'll talk to my guys and Coach Gruden will talk to his guys. We'll be better at practice tomorrow because this is just a waste of time for me.”
The two teams will go head-to-head in the second preseason game on Thursday.