Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett recently sat down with Mina Kimes of ESPN to discuss his suspension for clubbing Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph over the head with his own helmet. During this conversation, Garrett once again alleged that Rudolph had called him a racial slur. Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin appeared on ESPN's First Take on Monday and slammed the channel for the way the interview was handled.
Mike Tomlin reacts to the allegations made against Mason Rudolph. pic.twitter.com/H2lkcu4YQY— First Take (@FirstTake) February 17, 2020
"When these allegations returned this past weekend, I thought it was appropriate that Mason is properly defended," Tomlin said to Stephen A. Smith. "It was a thorough investigation done by us and the National Football League, I don't think that was represented during that piece."
As Tomlin continued to explain, these accusations by Garrett are very serious. He believes that they could affect Rudolph's reputation, as well as his future professional pursuits.
Tomlin also stated that he and the Steelers were "hacked off" by the way that ESPN handled the interview. They didn't believe that this discussion between Kimes and Garrett was fair to Rudolph, nor did it represent other factors from the previous investigation.
"He got fined $50,000 for essentially getting beat up," Tomlin continued to explain. "His reputation was tarnished for the allegations, none of which was founded. He was the quarterback in a losing circumstances at the end of a football game. Obviously, he was an active participant in the altercation, but a lot of the things that have beyond that, I struggle with."
Now that Garrett has repeated the allegation during this interview, there are questions about whether he will face any response from Rudolph and his representatives. Younger & Associates, Rudolph's lawyers and agent, released a statement on Saturday after watching the interview and hinted at possible legal action. The statement said that this isn't the first time that "Mr. Rudolph had been sacked by an African American player" and that Garrett had used the allegation to "coax sympathy" after the altercation in November.
"Although Mr. Rudolph had hoped to move forward, it is Mr. Garrett who has decided to utter this defamatory statement – in California. He is now exposed to legal liability," the statement ends.0comments
Whether or not Rudolph used the racial slur is unknown due to the opposing sides of the story, but one this is clear. Tomlin is unhappy with the ESPN interview, and he had no problem with stating that fact during a live interview.
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