From the moment Washington linebacker Jon Bostic laid a dangerous hit to the head of Dallas Cowboys quarterback Andy Dalton on Sunday, it was clear that it was a poor decision by the veteran tackler.
Bostic was ejected and head coach Ron Rivera reached out to Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy following the game to let him know that's not how his team typically carries itself. Washington defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio was equally disappointed in the hit when it happened in real-time.
His frustration came from the fact that Bostic's actions were unnecessary in the moment, and it prevented the defense from getting off the field on third down.
“I was kind of pissed, really, honestly that we didn’t get off the field right there," Del Rio said to NBC Sports Washington's JP Finlay. “I’m like, ‘you know you can’t hit the quarterback up there.' So, I know it wasn’t his intent, obviously, but I’m not sure he had to bring that level of physicality to get that quarterback down.”
After the game, Del Rio reviewed the film to get a better understanding of what happened on the play. He drew the same conclusions -- the hit was not needed but not something Bostic did with any spiteful intent -- but also understood that his linebacker felt as if Dalton could have slid earlier to avoid creating the contact.
To Del Rio, the hindsight on the play will always create different viewpoints and evaluations. The fact of the matter was Bostic hit the quarterback in a dangerous way, and even if it was not on purpose, that is usually going to warrant a flag.
“You can talk about all those different things, bottom line it was a bang-bang play, there was no malicious intent on JB’s part," Del Rio said. "I know he feels bad about that. Bottom line, they got the penalty and we move on."
It has been reported that Bostic will not be suspended for the hit, but a potential fine is still on the table. Dalton will enter the concussion protocol as his status for Week 8 remains uncertain.