Derwin James Chargers safety Derwin James was ejected from Monday’s game against the Colts following a huge hit on receiver Ashton Dulin.

Week 16’s Monday night game between the Los Angeles Chargers and Indianapolis Colts featured an ejection and could leave the Chargers without one of their best defensive players for at least some time after the game.

In an attempt to break up a pass, Derwin James, Los Angeles’ Pro Bowl safety, laid out Colts receiver Ashton Dulin. The hit shook up both James and Dulin. After the officials briefly conferenced, James was not only penalized — but ejected from the game.

The reaction of the football world was divided on this one. James had some defenders.

Michael Peterson of SB Nation felt that the hit wasn’t as bad as it looked.

“Derwin’s torso is contorted to lead with shoulder. No intention to go crown first. Unfortunate bang-bang play but it’s not anywhere near as egregious as everyone is making it out to be.”

Shawne Merriman, a former All-Pro linebacker for the Chargers did not approve of the ejection, saying “They should get rid of ejecting players in the pros”

Longtime offensive lineman Mitchell Schwartz, though, was a lot more critical of James.

“We really don’t need to bring in a f*****g analyst to re-litigate this hit. Derwin dropped his head and lead with the top of his head to a defenseless player. Just so happened to hit him in the shoulder/neck/head and concuss the WR too but it’s illegal and cheap regardless.”

Matt Verderame, an NFL reporter for Fansided, had a similar take.

“I’m usually on the side of understanding the physical nature of football, but Derwin James deserved to be ejected for that hit. No effort to tackle with his arms, led with the helmet, cracked the WR in the head/neck.”

Steve Wyche of the NFL Network felt the reaction to the hit was a sign of good progress in the NFL. “The fact that the Derwin James hit shook so many of us shows how far we have come, because those hits were rather commonplace until maybe ten years ago.”

Chris Nowinski, a neuroscientist and former WWE wrestler, whose career in the ring was ended due to a concussion and was outspoken during the Tua Tagovailoa controversy earlier in the season, also weighed in on the matter.

“Rare to have both players suffer a #concussion on the same hit, but it appears Derwin James & Ashton Dulin both suffered traumatic brain injuries here. James ejected. No word yet on how the brain injuries will impact their families in 20 years.”

[Photo Credit: ESPN]

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