A fight between Michael Pittman and Kyle Dugger led to ejections for both players in Saturday's game between the Indianapolis Colts and New England Patriots, but T.Y. Hilton might have also deserved an ejection.
Patriots coach Bill Belichick thinks the veteran receiver should have been tossed for contacting an official.
"Bottom line is both players got ejected," Belichick said of the fight Monday, per ESPN's Mike Reiss. "I would say I understand that. Whether I agree with it or not, that's a whole another discussion. [But] I don't understand why T.Y. Hilton wasn't ejected for contacting an official. Intentionally or unintentionally, that has no bearing on the play. And those plays are reviewable and are reviewed."
The main scuffle was between Pittman and Dugger, leading to a wider altercation between the two teams.
Hilton was caught up in the pile and was seen pushing over an official when getting to his feet.
The NFL rules state "under no circumstance is a player allowed to shove, push, or strike an official in an offensive, disrespectful, or unsportsmanlike manner."
There is also an option for the replay official to "instruct the on-field officiating crew to disqualify the player" if an act is determined to be flagrant.
"Based on the rule, I don't see why T.Y. Hilton wasn't ejected," Belichick said. "I mean, he pushed an official. That was pretty clear. But that wasn't called at all. That's a clear-cut ejection to me."
Hilton remained in the game as the Colts closed out the 27-17 victory. Though the wideout caught just one pass in the win, the 32-year-old is a veteran leader for the Colts, and his impact likely goes beyond his on-field production.
The league will review the incident and could hand out additional punishment to the players involved.