Jack Del Rio on Marquette King’s 15-yard penalties: ‘It’s unacceptable’
Marquette King has drawn the ire of Jack Del Rio for being assessed unsportsmanlike penalties in consecutive weeks. The Oakland Raiders punter, known for his flamboyant ways and enthusiastic celebrations, has been informed by his head coach that his conduct over the past two weeks has been “unacceptable.”
King drew his second personal foul in two games during last Thursday’s 21-13 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs after confronting Tyreek Hill following a punt return for a touchdown.
And Del Rio says it’s beyond time to put the kibosh on such antics.
“He can’t have another penalty; cannot have another penalty,” Del Rio said of King this week, via ESPN. “I’ve allowed him to have his freedom. I want him to express himself. I think that’s when he’s at his best.
“[But] we can’t have routine 15-yard penalties out of our punter. We’ve got two in a row, two weeks in a row, and that’s got to come to a stop.”
King’s “donkey dance” was also mocked by Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce during the game.
Travis Kelce doing his best Marquette King impression pic.twitter.com/UjGFui95yX
— The Cauldron (ICYMI) (@CauldronICYMI) December 9, 2016
But King arguably got the last laugh in the quasi-feud by delivering a terrific zinger on Twitter about Kelce being a reality show star.
I told him I don't need a reality show to find a girl lol… https://t.co/O54A8nCA0b
— Marquette King (@MarquetteKing) December 9, 2016
Still, it’s a rare occurrence indeed for a punter to be assessed a personal foul, much less two in two weeks. ESPN Stats & Information reports a punter had been flagged for unsportsmanlike penalties only four times since 2001. And that’s among the myriad reasons Del Rio says King’s antics have to stop.
“It’s unacceptable,” Del Rio said. “I played a long time and didn’t have one [personal foul] in my career, that I can remember. I started to go around the staff today. I’m not going to tell you which coaches, but I didn’t get very far. I just gave up on it.”
Del Rio concedes personal fouls can be part of the game, but for a 10-3 team with big aspirations, they need to be limited.
“It can happen, but we don’t want to see that,” Del Rio said. “We want to be under control, want to play smart, tough football.”