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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs' Talib, official have heated exchange after game

The Tampa Tribune
Published:   |   Updated: March 22, 2013 at 02:56 AM
BALTIMORE -

Buccaneers cornerback Aqib Talib got into a heated confrontation with an NFL official and was physically restrained by teammates outside the team's locker room after Sunday's 17-10 loss at Baltimore.

Talib was upset about a penalty called by field judge Boris Cheek late in the second quarter. Bucs cornerback Myron Lewis was called for pass interference against Ravens receiver T.J. Houshmandzadeh at the Bucs' 10-yard line. The pass, on a third-and-3 play from Tampa Bay's 34-yard line, was incomplete and the Ravens would have been forced to punt.

Instead, the penalty put Baltimore at Tampa Bay's 10-yard line with 42 seconds left in the half. On the next play, receiver Derrick Mason caught a touchdown pass from Joe Flacco for a 17-3 lead.

After the game, Talib followed a group of officials, which included Cheek, and cursed at them as they all walked through the tunnel. The exchange, witnessed by several reporters waiting outside Tampa Bay's locker room, became heated when Talib said, "You made a p------ call."

One of the officials responded to Talib by saying, "You played like a p------."

Talib tried to charge at the official and verbally threatened to punch him, but was held back by teammates.

Greg Aiello, the NFL's senior vice president of public relations, said in an e-mail Sunday night that he was unaware of the incident, but added, "We will look into it."

None of the involved parties wanted to talk about the incident.

"We only make comments to the pool reporter when it's about a call that was made on the field," NFL Officiating Supervisor Neely Dunn told a pool reporter from the Baltimore Sun. "So, we have no comment about whatever you're talking about. That's the only thing I'll say right now. We have no comment about it. If you want to ask us about something that happened out on the field, we will entertain that. But, we're not going to entertain what you're talking about."

Talib declined to speak with reporters after the game. He has spoken after games only twice this season, at Arizona and San Francisco.

The penalty also incited Bucs coach Raheem Morris, who was seen yelling at Cheek heading into halftime. Morris was unaware of Talib's postgame exchange.

"I don't know what language you're talking about," Morris said. "If an official uses improper language then that's the official's deal. The guy I talked with, we had a conversation about what he thought he saw and we had a healthy conversation on the way out, too.

"You know me, I don't talk about calls. I talk to my officials about them."

Talib has had several anger-related incidents since Tampa Bay drafted him in the first round in 2008.

As a rookie, Talib got into a physical confrontation with a teammate at the NFL's rookie symposium. Prior to the 2009 season, Talib got angry at Donald Penn during a voluntary offseason workout and swung a helmet at him, but missed and hit former teammate Torrie Cox, causing several facial injuries.

Talib was arrested in August 2009 after an incident with a cab driver. He reached a civil settlement with the cab driver, entered into a pretrial diversion program and was ordered to take anger management classes. The NFL suspended him without pay for Tampa Bay's opening game this season and fined him an additional game check, for violating the NFL's personal conduct policy.

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