New England Patriots wide receiver Danny Amendola has been fined $23,152 by the NFL for a blindside block he delivered during last week’s AFC divisional round playoff game against the Kansas City Chiefs. Amendola was the returner on a punt and when the ball bounced near the goal line, he delivered a hard hit to Chiefs cornerback Jamell Fleming so the latter wouldn’t be able to down the ball inside the 5-yard line.
"We’re coached to do that," Amendola said, via NESN. "It’s a big play if I block that guy and the ball bounces in the end zone. We get the ball on the 20-yard line, so it’s a big play in the game, big play for field position."
Patriots head coach Bill Belichick agreed.
"I saw him block the guy trying to down the ball. It is hard to tell from the coaching film where the hit occurred. But it was a legal play. We are allowed to block him," Belichick said to ESPN. "He didn’t give a fair-catch signal, so he is allowed to block. … There were a lot of bodies around there and a lot of pushing and shoving and all that. I think you’d have to ask the officials exactly what they called on that."
And for his part, Fleming understood why Amendola did what he did.
"[Punter] Dustin Colquitt is one of the best, especially at the pooch play," Fleming said. "All I have to do is go find the ball. Of course they know that, too. That’s why he did what he did."