The New England Patriots had a solid 23-3 over the Buffalo Bills yesterday. In the fourth quarter, Bills’ cornerback Tre’Davious White jumped up and intercepted a Tom Brady pass meant for Rob Gronkowski, a.k.a. Gronk. White hit the ground and was touched by another Patriots player. However, that was not enough for Gronkowski, who decided to lay a wrestling-type move on the rookie by jamming his arm and full body weight onto White’s head and neck. White was visibly in pain, as he took off his helmet. The cornerback is now in the concussion protocol.

Although Gronkowski did get a personal foul penalty, many fans and sports analysts feel he deserves a suspension.

Gronk’s odd apology to White

Gronkowksi did apologize to White in a post-game interview, as stated by Buffalo Rumblings, but it was not an apology in which the tight end took full responsibility for his dirty hit. Gronkowski blamed his own frustration and the fact that he was being held all game without the referees calling penalties as reasons for the classless move. Despite Gronkowski stating that he does not believe in shots like that, he still delivered a cheap shot that did have serious repercussions for White. White has a concussion and may not be able to play for Week 14.

No reason for tight end’s frustration

For Gronkowski to chalk up his blockhead hit to frustration makes no sense. At that point in the game, as stated by Pro Football stats, Gronk had his most yards in a game for this season. Brady managed to connect with him nine times for 147 yards. The tight end’s frustration should have been low or non-existent.

The real frustration seemed to be Gronk not liking the fact that a rookie cornerback picked off a pass meant for him. Despite the win, Brady had zero touchdowns for the day. Hence, White did his job for the game.

Why CTE is a big deal

Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) has been linked to concussions in the NFL. According to CNN, a recent study published by JAMA this year stated that 110 out of the 111 brains of NFL players that were donated to science were found to have CTE.

CTE interferes with the brain’s neural pathways and can cause impaired memory and judgment, suicide, confusion, aggressive behavior, impulsivity, depression, and anxiety. Many players have suffered from CTE, such as Dave Duerson, Junior Seau, Mike Webster, and Aaron Hernandez. If the NFL does not suspend Gronkowski for his deliberate hit on White, then the league’s commitment to keeping players safe will be questioned.

The Buffalo Bills play the Patriots again on Christmas Eve in Gillette Stadium. It should be a grudge match, especially if Buffalo still has a chance at making the playoffs. A White-Gronkowksi match-up would make things even more heated.