Miami Dolphins defensive tackle Akeem Spence says he was trying to protect himself in a fight that led to his ejection for ripping off an opponent’s helmet.

Spence was penalized for unnecessary roughness and ejected in the second quarter of Sunday’s win over Oakland following his skirmish with guard Kelechi Osemele.

Trouble began with Spence and Osemele still on the ground after a sack by Miami’s Cameron Wake.

“I’m trying to go celebrate, but the guy has his hands on me, pushing me, pushing me, pushing me,” Spence said Monday. “At some point as a man, I’ve got to protect myself and get his hands off me and do what I’ve got to do. It just went beyond football at that point, which it shouldn’t have.”

The incident was doubly costly for Miami. The penalty negated the third-down sack and led to an Oakland field goal. And the Dolphins became short-handed in the front four when ends William Hayes and Andre Branch were sidelined with knee injuries.

Miami Dolphins defensive tackle Akeem Spence (93) is escorted off the field after a play during the first half of an NFL football game against the Oakland Raiders, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

“I feel really bad about it because I thought I took Cam’s sack away, and then you put your defense in a bad position,” Spence said.

He said the episode was typical of the Raiders.

“We know Oakland’s O-line, we know what they do, we know how they play,” he said. “They’re extra after the whistle.”


Source: The Associated Press

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