BALTIMORE -- Cleveland Browns punt returner Josh Cribbs was knocked unconscious after a devastating blow by Ravens linebacker Dannell Ellerbe in the first quarter of their Thursday night game.
Cribbs took a hard shoulder to the side of the head, knocking off his helmet and banging the back of his head on the turf. Adding insult to injury, Ravens cornerback Anthony Allen inadvertently kicked him in the face while completing the tackle.
In the first game following the resolution of the referee lockout, officials did not flag Ellerbe, who legally struck Cribbs with a shoulder, not his head, and forced a fumble which the Ravens recovered.
They did flag two players after a post-play skirmish: Ravens safety James Ihedigbo and the Browns' Johnson Bademosi for personal fouls.
Cribbs stood up under his own power and walked off the field after about a minute on his back, when players from both teams surrounded and prayed for him.
Ellerbe looked to be crying on the field. Referees have demonstrated more control over post-play activity in their first game back than did replacement officials, who were largely criticized for being timid and, at times, incompetent.
Please login to add to favorites
Already added to favorites
Added as Favorite