Following a skirmish last week that involved Detroit Lions wide receiver Titus Young and safety Louis Delmas, Young missed the last two days of organized team activities (OTAs). It was reported yesterday that not only had Young punched Delmas when he wasn’t looking, but that he was asked to not participate in OTAs.
According to a team report today, however, Young was not officially suspended by the Lions and Tim Twentyman instead said “his absence Monday was not the result of any punitive action by the team.”
I don’t know about that. I’m sure there was some sort of understood agreement between the sides involved to maybe “sit this one out.” Especially when you’re dealing with one of the leaders on the defense and certainly on the team in Delmas.
When asked his opinions of the incident, wide receiver Nate Burleson did his very best to downplay the whole thing. Even going so far as to say it happens regularly across the league.
“We (Burleson and Stephen Tulloch) were working out,” Burleson said. “I don’t know if it was a punch, a push or a shove. It’s one of those things that happen all the time. When I played in Minnesota, we fought like every other day, and we were the closest team that I’ve been on up until that point. A scuffle in every eight or nine months here, that’s something rare. That shows you we don’t do it often.
“In ’03, fights were part of the game. It’s just with a lot of the rule changes and discipline problems, people frown upon stuff like that. I would just like to say it wasn’t that serious.”
First off, he’s right. That was my initial reaction when all this happens. You have a bunch of grown, stubborn, ego-centric men working together on a daily basis, tensions are bound to get high on occasion. The only problem with this particular situation is that Young sucker-punched him. That’s never OK.
I’m not justifying ever hitting a teammate. But, you certainly don’t do it when they aren’t looking. That’s just childish and cowardly. There’s no word on when Young will return to Allen Park, but let’s hope when he does it’s with a new and improved attitude.