NFL suspends Texans’ Denzel Perryman 3 games for illegal hits


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The NFL has suspended Texans linebacker Denzel Perryman without pay for three games for repeated violation of player safety rules.
Perryman’s latest infraction was a helmet-to-helmet hit to Bengals star wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase with 4:07 remaining in Sunday’s game, for which he received an unnecessary roughness penalty.
“You lowered your head and delivered a forcible blow to the shoulder and then the head/neck area of the receiver. You had unobstructed path to your opponent and the illegal contact could have been avoided,” NFL vice president of football operations Jon Runyan wrote in his letter to Perryman.
The Texans’ Denzel Perryman was flagged for unnecessary roughness for this hit on the Bengals’ Ja’Marr Chase on Sunday and received a three-game suspension from the NFL on Tuesday. Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports
Runyan also noted that Perryman has six such violations in his career, including in Week 2 against the Colts, for which he received a fine for violating the same rule.
“When players violate the rules intended to protect player safety on a repeated basis, and particularly when the violations carry with them a significant risk of injury to an opposing player, it is appropriate to impose substantially greater penalties,” Runyan wrote in his letter.
Under the collective bargaining agreement, Perryman has the right to appeal the suspension, which would be heard by either Derrick Brooks or James Thrash, the hearing officers jointly appointed by the league and the players’ association.
If the suspension stands, he will miss games against the Cardinals, Jaguars and Broncos. He would be eligible to return to the Texans’ active roster on Dec. 4.
Perryman, 30, is second on the Texans with 41 tackles this season. This is first season with Houston, which improved to 5-4 with their victory over the Bengals on Sunday.
Texans linebackers Blake Cashman and Henry To’oTo’o are tied for the team lead in tackles (53). Both To’oTo’o (374) and Cashman (343) have more defensive snaps this season than Perryman (268).
Linebacker Christian Harris is likely to see an increased role if Perryman’s suspension stands. His defensive snaps have increased in the past two weeks, as he’s played 78 snaps after just 17 in Week 6 and 8 combined.
ESPN’s DJ Bien-Aime contributed to this report.


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