Washington teammates Jonathan Allen and Daron Payne enter sideline altercation during Cowboys game
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The heated seats on the Washington sideline are also meant to warm up the temperament of WFT defensive players.
After Dallas scored a touchdown to give the Cowboys a 28-7 lead against Washington in the second quarter of their Sunday Night Football game, WFT defensive lineman Jonathan Allen was seen throwing a punch on Daron Payne before being separated on the sidelines.
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It’s unclear what sparked the two, although NBC lineup reporter Michele Tafoya reported that Payne was “extremely angry” with his teammate.
“I can’t tell you what sparked this fight, but I can tell you their long history between them,” Tafoya said on the show. “It looked like Daron Payne was extremely angry with Allen. Sam Mills, the defensive line coach, had to calm them both down and now they’re trying to play together.”
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Payne and Allen were teammates in Alabama in 2015 and 2016, when Payne was in freshman and sophomore and Allen was junior and senior, respectively. Allen was drafted 17th overall by Washington in 2017; Payne was ranked 13th overall in 2018 by Washington.
The two starters were each huge pieces for Washington on the defensive line. Allen leads the team with 8.5 sacks and 26 quarterback hits, while Payne is third on the team with 3.5 sacks and 12 hits.
Pro Football Focus ranks Allen as the third best inside defenseman in the NFL and Payne as the 53rd best.
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The game certainly didn’t go the way Washington had hoped with their playoff hopes on the line. Washington had allowed touchdowns on each of the Cowboys’ previous three discs and, after the altercation, allowed two more to give. a 42-7 lead in Dallas before halftime.
After halftime, Tafoya reported on a conversation she had with Washington coach Ron Rivera in which he explained the background to the altercation. He simply said the team were “excited and pissed off”. Tafoya reported that she asked if that included Rivera, to which he replied, “Hell yes.”
According to FiveThirtyEight, Washington has a 31% chance of qualifying for the playoffs with a win over Dallas, but only a 5% chance with a loss.
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