May 30, 2024

Pittsburgh Steelers star Minkah Fitzpatrick has defended himself in the wake of a tackle he made on Nick Chubb that ended the Cleveland Browns running back’s season.

Fitzpatrick, a three-time All-Pro in Pittsburgh, appeared to dive at Chubb’s legs in an attempt to bring him down on a designed run play early in the second quarter of Monday night’s game. The tackle has come in for criticism, and — despite Fitzpatrick’s claims that he didn’t mean to injure Chubb — should live long in the memory of this intense AFC North rivalry.

Fitzpatrick: “I’m not a dirty player”
Speaking to reporters on Thursday, Fitzpatrick — who left Monday’s game in the third quarter with a chest injury — confirmed he would play in the Steelers’ Week 3 matchup against the Las Vegas Raiders and responded to claims that he is a “dirty” player.

“I’m chippy, I’m edgy, of course, but I’m not a dirty player,” Fitzpatrick said. “I’m not going to sit here and defend my character. I know the type of player I am.”

Fitzpatrick further stated that Chubb knows there was no intent to injure on the low hit, and he explained that he felt he had to go low because of Chubb’s immense upper body strength. And despite trying to wrap up Chubb by the legs, Fitzpatrick still sustained an injury that landed him in a hospital on Monday night.

“I played against him for the past five years, two times a year. And I love competing against him. He brings the best out of me and I bring the best out of him,” Fitzpatrick said. “No chance that I would ever try and purposely injure somebody, always.”

Browns, Steelers to meet again in November
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Nov. 19 is a date that will be circled in red on the calendar of every Browns fan. This is the date the Steelers visit Cleveland for the rematch, in a game that could have serious postseason implications for both teams.

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The Browns have won three of the past four home games against Pittsburgh, and they last lost to the Steelers at home in 2017. The NFL has made no movement toward suspending or fining Fitzpatrick for the hit on Chubb, and the safety should be available to play in the rematch if he stays healthy — meaning Cleveland fans will zero in on him following the hit that knocked out their hero Chubb.

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