By Jay Skurski
The hit was fine.
It's the way the Cleveland Browns reacted after free safety Tashaun Gipson leveled Buffalo Bills quarterback EJ Manuel during the third quarter Thursday night that had Bills center Eric Wood fired up today in the locker room.
"The hit was fine. What ticked me off was the way they acted afterwards," Wood said late this morning, a little over 12 hours after the Bills were defeated, 37-24, in FirstEnergy Stadium. "I hope our defense never acts like that when they injure an opposing quarterback because, you know, you've got to show some class in that situation. There's a few guys over there that obviously didn't."
Gipson made direct contact with Manuel's right knee, which the Bills' quarterback immediately reached for. After getting up, Gipson looked right at Manuel and gave an emphatic fist pump.
Wood said Browns strong safety T.J. Ward made it clear they were targeting Manuel.
"You've got T.J Ward yelling at Kiko [Alonso], you know, former college teammates, 'I told you to warn him that we were going to get him.' That's classless," Wood said. "Every team's probably got 'em, so I'm not going to say that nobody on our team has never done that. But it ticks you off when someone on the other team does it, for sure."
Browns quarterback Brian Hoyer suffered a torn ACL when Alonso tackled him on a scramble in the first quarter. The Browns announced today Hoyer needs season-ending surgery.
taggedEJ Manuel | Eric Wood | Kiko Alonso