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Bengals’ Eli Apple accuses Patriots’ Mac Jones of ‘dirty play’

Dec 11, 2022; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; Cincinnati Bengals cornerback Eli Apple (20) leaps into the stands with the fans at the conclusion of a Week 14 NFL game against the Cleveland Browns, Sunday, Dec. 11, 2022, at Paycor Stadium in Cincinnati. The Cincinnati Bengals won, 23-10.  Mandatory Credit: Kareem Elgazzar-USA TODAY Sports

Cincinnati Bengals cornerback Eli Apple accused New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones of committing a “dirty play” during Saturday’s game in Foxborough, Mass.

The play in question came with 6:17 remaining in the fourth quarter of the Bengals’ 22-18 victory over the Patriots.

Jones dove at the legs of a sprinting Apple approximately 5 yards behind the action on an apparent fumble return for a touchdown by Bengals linebacker Germaine Pratt. The play itself ultimately was blown dead and determined to be an intentional grounding penalty.

“He tripped me,” Apple told NESN.com. “I thought it was a dirty play. He’s done that before, I’ve seen it.”

Last season, Panthers defensive end Brian Burns accused the then-rookie Jones of questionable behavior following a strip sack. Jones grabbed Burns’ leg to prevent him from pursuing a loose ball, a move that aggravated an ankle injury.

–Field Level Media