The NFL suspended Denver Broncos cornerback Kareem Jackson on Monday following a controversial hit on Minnesota Vikings quarterback Joshua Dobbs, which caused a fumble and led to points for his team.
Jackson led with his helmet and made contact with Dobbs’ helmet on the play in the first quarter. But there was no foul called, and the Broncos scored a field goal on the next drive. Denver won the game 21-20.
Quarterback Joshua Dobbs #15 of the Minnesota Vikings fumbles the football after being hit by safety Kareem Jackson #22 of the Denver Broncos during the first quarter of the NFL game at Empower Field At Mile High on November 19, 2023 in Denver, Colorado. (Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Jackson was suspended for four games without pay for repeated violations of the league’s rules meant to protect players, the league said.
NFL vice president of football operations Jon Runyan wrote in a letter that Jackson broke the rule on leading with his helmet to make forcible contact against an opponent.
“Illegal acts that are flagrant and jeopardize the safety of players will not be tolerated,” Runyan wrote. “The League will continue to stress enforcement of the rules that prohibit using your helmet to make forcible contact with your opponent.
Denver Broncos safety Kareem Jackson (22) upends Minnesota Vikings tight end T.J. Hockenson (87) after a catch in the second quarter at Empower Field at Mile High November 19, 2023. (Andy Cross/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
“On the play in question, you lowered your head and delivered a forceful blow to the shoulder and head/neck area of an opponent when you had time and space to avoid such contact. You could have made contact with your opponent within the rules, yet you chose not to.”
Jackson was suspended for four games after violating the league’s unnecessary roughness rule during their Week 7 game against the Green Bay Packers, but the discipline was reduced to two games. He was also disqualified from the team’s Week 2 game against the Washington Commanders.
Jackson can return before Week 15 when the Broncos take on the Detroit Lions. He’s reportedly set to appeal the suspension.
Kareem Jackson #22 of the Denver Broncos reacts after being penalized on a play in the fourth quarter of the game against the Green Bay Packers at Empower Field At Mile High on October 22, 2023 in Denver, Colorado. (Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images)
The veteran defensive back has 51 tackles and two interceptions this season.
Ryan Gaydos is a senior editor for Fox News Digital.