Browns receiver Greg Little claims Ravens' James Ihedigbo choked him
Browns wide receiver Greg Little accused Ravens safety James Ihedigbo of choking him on the bottom of a pile Sunday.
Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports a still photo supports the claim, showing the safety's hands around the receiver's neck. Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal reports CBS television screen shots also back up Little's accusation.
Little said being choked led to him ripping off Ihedigbo's helmet and throwing it during the Browns' 24-18 victory. Little was flagged for a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty with 1:16 left in the first quarter. He later drew a taunting penalty against Ihedigbo with 11:10 left in the second quarter.
"I was pushing him off me and (the helmet) popped off. The refs (were) pulling him off me, he's still trying to choke me, I'm pushing him off and his helmet popped off.'
"I know the ref was saying 'let go of his face mask,' but he was choking me, so I'm not (going to let go),'' said Little, who was flagged 15 yards for unsportsmanlike conduct. "There's a thin line between football and just morals and if you're a man, you're not going to let a guy spit in your face, and your not going to let a guy choke you.
"You're not going to let a guy have (his) way with your kids or your family or your wife. It's just how it is.
"I don't have to say anything to the ref. At that point, (Ihedigbo's) crossed the line.''
Little said if he's fined, Ihedigbo also deserves to be fined.
Little said he has no regrets about throwing the helmet at the end of the first quarter.
"None,'' he said. "If you're going to take the game of football to where he took it to, I'll meet you there.''
He said he'd throw the helmet again in the same situation and challenged Ihedigbo's toughness.
"Ihedigbo said after the game that Little thinks he a tough guy, but he's not." Little retorted Wednesday, "he's far from tough.''
Ihedigbo later denied choking Little:
"I would never personally cross the lines or play outside the rules in any manner,'' Ihedigbo told reporters in Baltimore Wednesday. "I had my hand on his chest it is what it is. It's kind of unfortunate that this is even being an issue.'' Ihedigbo stressed, "I'm not a dirty player by any means. He's saying what took place that didn't take place. The refs would've seen it. Other players would've seen it. And I would have been punished for the play as well. That didn't take place. He lost his cool. He threw my helmet. Therefore, the penalty was given on him. To sit back and say now all this other stuff happened and it's Wednesday and the game happened on Sunday is kind of ridiculous to me."