Vikings safety Harrison Smith has been ejected from Minnesota’s Week 4 matchup with the Houston Texans after a helmet-to-helmet hit on tight end Jordan Akins. The play happened late in the second quarter of Sunday’s contest at the end of a 26-yard reception by Akins, who the team says is now being evaluated for a concussion. Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer did not seem too pleased with the call as he was seen on the sideline jawing with officials after the hit.
The catch and penalty brought the Texans all the way to the 10-yard line, but the Houston offense wasn’t able to fully capitalize, only coming away with a field goal.
Smith is in the midst of his ninth season in the NFL (all with the Vikings). Through three games this season, the 31-year-old safety has 18 tackles, two passes defended and one interception. Following this hit and ejection it will be curious to see if there is any further punishment handed down from the league in terms of a fine.
As for Akins, the third-year tight end started in two of Houston’s first three games of the year entering Week 4. He’s also been a reliable option for Deshaun Watson, catching 11 of his 12 targets for 122 yards and a touchdown entering this game. Prior to going down with his potential concussion, Akins was leading the team in receiving with three receptions for 46 yards.