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Vontaze Burfict: Refs obviously have it out for me

SANTA CLARA, CA - DECEMBER 20: Vontaze Burfict #55 of the Cincinnati Bengals reacts after a play during their NFL game against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi’s Stadium on December 20, 2015 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

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Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict picked up a big penalty in overtime on Monday night and he thinks his reputation for playing close to and over the line was the reason why he was flagged.

Broncos tight end Virgil Green made a catch near the sideline and Burfict tried to strip the ball away. Burfict continued tugging at the ball as Green went out of bounds and Green went to the ground after Burfict yanked his hands away. A flag for unnecessary roughness was thrown against Burfict, who said there wasn’t a whistle and that he feels the flag was only thrown because he was involved in the play.

“The refs were late to blow whistles all night, and they threw the flag late,” Burfict said, via “Once the dude [Green] flopped, the ref looked at me and seen it was my number and then threw the flag. I can’t control that. Just keep playing football. ...The refs, they obviously have it out for me, but you can’t call a bulls--- flag like that at the end of the game. He looked at my number and then threw it.”

Coach Marvin Lewis was on the opposite side of the field and said he thought Burfict didn’t do “anything besides push the guy as he goes out of bounds.” Green may have sold the final shove, but he was out of bounds at the point of last contact and that’s the sort of thing that draws flags whether the player involved has Burfict’s history or not.