ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) — Peyton Manning has been docked a reported $8,268 for taunting Houston Texans safety D.J. Swearinger in a preseason game last week.
The Denver Broncos quarterback laid into the safety for hitting Wes Welker in the head, which left the slot receiver with his third concussion in 10 months.
The penalty was reported by ESPN. Manning told ESPN’s Chris Mortensen: “I accept it. Money well spent.”
Swearinger’s hit on Welker drew a 15-yard personal foul – but so far no word of a fine.
Manning was irked by the hit on Welker and after throwing a 29-yard TD pass to Emmanuel Sanders on the next snap, he ran up to Swearinger and let him know it.
That resulted in the first personal foul of Manning’s NFL career along with kudos from his teammates.
Manning explained afterward that he acted out of concern for Welker’s well-being. Besides, he said, what’s 15 yards with 5 seconds left in the half?
“I think if you’re going to get one, that’s a good time to get one,” Manning said after the game.
Swearinger said Manning swore at him but wouldn’t go into details: “He didn’t invite me to dinner,” Swearinger said.
He insisted, however, that his hit on Welker wasn’t dirty, explaining the receiver slid at the last moment.
“I led with my shoulder. That’s the only thing I could do. He’s a short guy,” Swearinger said.
Swearinger had been at the center of several skirmishes during three days of joint practices with the Broncos one week after angering the Atlanta Falcons with his combative style during a joint workout in Georgia.
Welker is going through the NFL’s concussion protocol. He flew with the Broncos to Dallas to watch the final preseason game Thursday night along with most of the other starters.
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