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Ravens’ John Harbaugh defends Earl Thomas’ hit on Steelers QB Mason Rudolph

John Harbaugh, Earl Thomas, Mason Rudolph, Ravens, Steelers

Baltimore Ravens safety Earl Thomas has taken plenty of flak for his hit on Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph in Week 5. Head coach John Harbaugh has come to his defense.

There has been plenty of debate regarding whether or not it was a dirty hit on Thomas’ part. According to Jeff Zrebiec of TheAthletic.com, John Harbaugh feels he made every effort to relent on Rudolph:

“I see Earl trying to pull off,” Harbaugh said. “There’s no question about it, if you watch the tape. It’s clear. It’s just an unfortunate collision. He felt bad about it, the result of it. He didn’t want to see an injury. None of us do.”

Although Thomas was penalized for the hit, he was not ultimately ejected. It also remains to be seen if he will be fined by the league. Regardless, there will continue to be discussions about Thomas’ part in knocking Rudolph unconscious.

While the hit was undoubtedly was unfortunate, it is a reminder of just how physical the NFL is and why they are taking steps to avoid situations like these from occurring. Try as they may, the prospect of trying to completely eliminate such hard hits from the game is extremely far-fetched.

Fortunately, Rudolph has been released from the hospital and was recently seen at the team’s practice facility. He is currently in concussion protocol and no timetable has been set for his return. Regardless, it is still encouraging to see that the injury was not as worse as they initially appeared.