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Mike Shanahan: Tackle, Unsportsmanlike Penalty By DeAngelo Hall ‘Disappointing’

By ZAC BOYER | | @ZacBoyer

ASHBURN – After being called for defensive holding on Wes Welker three plays into the third quarter, DeAngelo Hall picked up the penalty flag thrown in his direction and threw it back at the officials.


Not only was it a costly play for the Washington Redskins – New England moved to the Washington 46-yard line after 20 yards in penalties – it was humiliating. Hall’s status as one of the team’s defensive captains makes it even more embarrassing.

“I think we understand that you have to keep your cool, regardless of if you like a call or you don’t like a call,” Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan said Monday. “That’s your job to handle yourself in a professional manner and, more importantly, not put your team in a hole by having a 15-yard penalty. Those are things that I’ve talked about with our football team, and if you make too many of those mistakes, eventually, you’re not with us.”

It wasn’t the only mind-boggling move by Hall on the afternoon. When Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski took a pass from quarterback Tom Brady over the middle and headed to the sidelines, pulling Redskins safeties Reed Doughty and DeJon Gomes with him, Hall was in position to help on the tackle but inexplicably stopped.

Doughty said he thought trying to tackle Gronkowski with Gomes knocked both defenders off the tight end. He avoided commenting directly on Hall’s play, instead saying only “you’ve got to have people flying to the ball.”

“I’m more worried about how I’m tackling and the fact is, I missed the tackle,” Doughty said. “Had I made it, he wouldn’t have had 30 extra yards.”

Hall told reporters after the game that he assumed Gronkowski was out of bounds, but there was a clear gap between the sidelines and the tight end. He later ran down to make the tackle on the tight end, catching him with cornerback Josh Wilson after a 49-yard gain that set up an 11-yard touchdown pass.

“That was disappointing, because one of the things DeAngelo usually does is finish,” Shanahan said. “A lot of corners don’t like to tackle. He’s one of the more physical guys in the league. I know he was embarrassed by it, as well as our whole football team. You’ve got to finish, especially when somebody’s in bounds, because things like that do happen.”