NFL punters aren’t usually the type of athletes who require random tests for performance-enhancing drugs, but what Indianapolis Colts punter Pat McAfee did in Sunday's game got him selected for an NFL doping test on Monday.
Trindon Holliday, a 5-foot-5, 169-pound kick returner for the Broncos, had a rough first quarter against the Colts on Sunday night, fumbling a punt for a critical turnover that led to a Colts touchdown. But things got even worse for Holliday on the ensuing kick return.
The Broncos returner received the kickoff and ran down the sideline, with only McAfee, a 6-foot-1, 233-pound kicker, to beat for a touchdown. Despite the obvious mismatch in size and athleticism, McAfee knocked Holliday out of bounds with a vicious tackle, which quickly went viral on social media. Though the hit appeared to be of the “helmet-to-helmet” variety, McAfee was not penalized.
Still, the huge tackle was enough of a shock that the NFL chose McAfee for a “random” urine doping test on Monday. The Colts punter posted the memo he received regarding the steroid test to his Twitter account. “You have been randomly selected by the NFL drug test problem’s Medical Advisor to complete a urine doping test today,” the note reads.
McAfee, 26, seemed more amused than offended by the test. “Guys…Make one random tackle…And end up on a “Random” steroid test…Must be my bod [sic],” the Colters punter tweeted. He also noted that he has the “upper body of an adolescent.”
NFL officials weren’t the only individuals to have a knee-jerk reaction to McAfee’s hit on Holliday. Former NFL star and current analyst Randy Moss suggested that McAfee’s hit was illegal, but admitted that Holliday got crushed. “No helmet 2 helmet because it’s a kicker huh lol! T holiday did get hit though,” Moss wrote.
Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, a player whose rough style of play has resulted in several fines over the past few years, also reacted on Twitter. “Big hit by the kicker on [Sunday Night Football]! Wonder if he will get a ……..? #BroncosVsColts.”
Despite the criticism, Pro Football Talk noted that McAfee’s hit wasn’t illegal. “Didn’t use top of his helmet,” Mike Florio wrote on the website’s Twitter account.