Vikings' Harrison Smith during training camp
Aug 28, 2020; Eagan, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings defensive back Harrison Smith (22) at practice at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

We already know that the NFL is serious about player safety and health on the field. It’s why the league has some of the most intense rules regarding helmet-to-helmet hits and late hits.

Minnesota Vikings star safety Harrison Smith found that out first-hand during Sunday’s Week 4 game against the Houston Texans. The five-time Pro Bowler was ejected in the first half after this helmet-to-helmet hit on Texans tight end Jordan Akins.

You be the judge.

It does appear that Smith might have led with his helmet some. Enough to warrant an ejection? Never one to keep his thoughts to himself, Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer didn’t seem to think so.

For his part, Akins was removed from the game and is being evaluated for a concussion.

If you zoom in on the hit, it does seem like Smith attempted to get his shoulder out in front. Should have intent played a role here? The whole play was certainly up for debate around the social media world.

Vincent Frank
Editor here at Sportsnaut. Contributor at Forbes. Previous bylines include Bleacher Report, Yahoo!, SB Nation. Heard on ESPN Radio and NBC Sports Radio. Northern California native living it up in Las Vegas. The Keto lifestyle. Traveler. Reader. TV watcher. Dog daddy. Sam Malone = greatest TV character ever. "Carpe diem. Seize the day, boys. Make your lives extraordinary," John Keating.