Evans suspended 1 game for role in Bucs-Saints brawl
Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans was suspended one game without pay Monday for violating the NFL's rules on unnecessary roughness and unsportsmanlike conduct during Sunday's game against the New Orleans Saints.
Evans and Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore were ejected after a fight broke out among players. Lattimore exchanged words with Bucs quarterback Tom Brady following a third-down play and then Evans pushed the defensive back, starting the fracas.
The NFL won't suspend Lattimore, though he'll likely be fined, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.
"When you noticed your teammates engaged in a confrontation with Saints players, you ran toward that area on the field and violently threw your body into and struck an unsuspecting opponent who was part of that confrontation," NFL vice president of football operations Jon Runyan wrote to Evans.
"You knocked your opponent to the ground, and a melee ensued involving players from both teams. Your aggressive conduct could have caused serious injury to your opponent and clearly does not reflect the high standards of sportsmanship expected of a professional."
Evans is expected to appeal the suspension, a source told ESPN's Jeremy Fowler.
"We don't want any fighting in our game because we lose a good player," Bucs head coach Todd Bowles said Monday, according to Greg Auman of the Athletic. "It doesn't help our team. We don't condone that, we don't teach that, we don't want that in our game."
If Evans' suspension stands, he'll miss Sunday's game against the Green Bay Packers. The four-time Pro Bowler would be eligible to return in Week 4 versus the Kansas City Chiefs.
Evans leads Tampa Bay with eight catches for 132 yards and one touchdown in two games this season. He received a one-game suspension in 2017 for hitting Lattimore after the whistle, which also led to an altercation.
The 2-0 Bucs are banged up at wide receiver, as Chris Godwin and Julio Jones didn't play in Sunday's win due to injuries. Tampa Bay still rosters wideouts Russell Gage, Scotty Miller, and Breshad Perriman, who scored the team's only offensive touchdown in Week 2.