SANTA CLARA -- By early Monday afternoon, Dashon Goldson had yet to see a FedEx envelope in his locker telling him if he has been suspended or fined by the league for fighting with Arizona receiver Early Doucet in the 49ers' win over the Cardinals.
Goldson is not expected to be suspended for any upcoming games. Suspensions after in-game ejections are rare. But Goldson can expect to be informed in the coming days of a hefty fine.
As Goldson sat on the ground in the backfield on the play in which rookie Aldon Smith sacked quarterback Richard Bartel, Doucet came up from behind and took a swipe at Goldson. Goldson got up and retaliated by throwing a few punches. Players from both teams separated the two. Only Goldson was penalized and ejected.
Goldson apologized to his teammates, coaches and the team's ownership after the game and left without talking to reporters. But Monday, he addressed what happened from in front of his locker before the players reported to meetings to prepare for Thursday night's game in Baltimore."What happened was, he was running his route and kind of ran into each other and we both fell," Goldson explained. "I'm looking around to see if the refs saw anything and all I felt was two punches to the head, and I got up and retaliated. It wasn't a smart thing. It wasn't a smart decision on my behalf, but I kind of lost it. And that's something I can't do as a vet and as a leader on this team."After the game, Doucet told reporters Goldson took a cheap shot at him knocking him to the ground -- something Goldson refuted."I kind of figured that he might of felt that way, but it wasn't a cheap shot," Goldson said. "He was running his route and I was trying to cut back and we both fell. So, he retaliated and I did too."In a typical week, players who face disciplinary action from the league will see the orange-and-blue packet sometime around midweek. Goldson says he does not know when to expect something with the 49ers on a shortened timeline. He said he will accept his punishment. But his head coach says the situation needs more attention by the officials, specifically for any player who initiates a conflict."Dashon was punched in the back of the head and then retaliated. What I think needs to be addressed is this mindset that you can't retaliate," Jim Harbaugh said at his weekly Monday press conference. "Obviously, they're not going to see the first one. It's always the second guy that gets caught. And that's the one that's going to get flagged."Had Dashon not thrown the punch, then what we would be saying was, there would have been no flag, there would have been no fine, we would have moved on to the next play. But the first one needs to get addressed. It needs to be officiated and that needs to be a foul. Otherwise, and you wonder if people do it, as soon as the whistle's blown, 'Hey, get the first shot in.' The mindset is, it doesn't matter the first one, it's the second one. So turn your back get the first shove in or the first punch in and then turn your back and see if you can't get a 15-yard penalty. I'm sure that's not what anyone wants who watches football is even associated with the game of football, but you do see it. Not just at the pro level, but at the college level and down to the high school level."