Bills Player on Shoving Fan: 'Emotions Boiled Over'

Pass rusher Shaq Lawson offers apology after scuffle with fan he says taunted players' families
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 28, 2023 8:31 AM CST
Bills Player Says Sorry After Shoving Eagles Fan
Buffalo Bills defensive end Shaq Lawson (90) warms up before an NFL football game against the Denver Broncos in Orchard Park, New York, on Nov. 13.   (AP Photo/Adrian Kraus)

Buffalo Bills pass rusher Shaq Lawson apologized Monday for shoving a Philadelphia Eagles fan behind the team's bench after alleging the person was making threatening remarks about players and their families. Lawson posted his apology on his Instagram account a day after a video showed him and five defensive teammates approach a spectator in the first row behind Buffalo's bench during a 37-34 overtime loss in Philadelphia. The video showed Bills defensive tackle Jordan Phillips walking up and exchanging words with the unidentified spectator, when Lawson followed and shoved the fan, who was wearing an Eagles shirt beneath his jacket and holding a can of beer, per the AP.

Lawson said the fan began heckling players before the game began and was allowed to stay in his seat after the Bills asked stadium security officials to have the person removed. "Eventually, our emotions boiled over and I made a mistake," Lawson wrote. "For that, I apologize, but there are certain lines that should not be crossed." Phillips echoed Lawson's comments in a message posted on his Instagram account. "I love the crowd I love rowdy fans it makes the game fun. But one thing I'm not going to tolerate is someone threatening me or my family," Phillips wrote. "This is a line that shouldn't be crossed."

Bills coach Sean McDermott referred to what happened as being "a very unfortunate situation" upon learning about it on Monday. "What I'm aware of is that people were asked to have the fan removed and nothing was done," McDermott said. "So at the end of the day, that's not for us to concern ourselves with at this point. It's just unfortunate overall that that would be taking place during a game." A message was left seeking comment from the NFL. A spokesman for the Eagles said the matter is being reviewed. The players were unavailable for comment with the Bills entering their bye week.

(More Buffalo Bills stories.)

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