Andre Johnson politely asked Cortland Finnegan to stop it. By the fourth quarter, Houston's star receiver had simply had it with the Tennessee cornerback's antagonistic antics.
Their feisty duel exploded into a full-blown fistfight late in the Texans’ 20-0 win over the Titans on Sunday. Both players were ejected, and the ugly incident could lead to further discipline from the NFL.
“He kept doing little things and I told him: ‘Just because you’re frustrated, you need to stop what you’re doing,’ ” Johnson said. “I guess he thought it was funny.”
The usually soft-spoken Johnson caught nine passes for 56 yards and a touchdown before walking off the field to a standing ovation.
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“It’s just a buildup of things over plays,” Johnson said. “I just lost my cool.”
Finnegan did not speak to reporters after the game.
“It’s not good for the game, no,” said Titans coach Jeff Fisher, co-chairman of the NFL’s competition committee. “You don’t want to see that stuff.”
The two got into a milder shoving match on the previous play, with Johnson giving Finnegan a shot in the back before Finnegan took off his helmet and walked away.
“I awarded it to Andre on points,” Texans owner Bob McNair joked.
This was Round 2 between Johnson and Finnegan. Last season, Johnson was fined $7,500 for taking Finnegan to the ground by the facemask during a scuffle after a play in a 34-31 Texans win.
“I wish that I could take back what happened, but I can’t,” Johnson said. “I’m pretty sure I’ll be disciplined for it.”
Adrian Peterson injured his right ankle in the first half of the Minnesota Vikings’ 17-13 victory over the Washington Redskins and did not return.
Peterson said his ankle “got rolled up” when he was tackled on a 1-yard carry late in the second quarter. Neither Peterson nor interim coach Leslie Frazier would speculate on the running back.
Playing for the first time this season after a long holdout, San Diego Chargers wide receiver Vincent Jackson injured a calf in the first quarter of a 36-14 victory over the Indianapolis Colts.
He did not have a catch before the injury.