DeAndre Hopkins delivers WWE-style suplex tackle of Saints defender — should he have been flagged?

<a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nfl/players/26650/" data-ylk="slk:DeAndre Hopkins">DeAndre Hopkins</a> drew a 15-yard penalty for an exceptionally violent tackle of a <a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/nfl/teams/new-orleans/" data-ylk="slk:Saints">Saints</a> defender. (Getty)
DeAndre Hopkins drew a 15-yard penalty for an exceptionally violent tackle of a Saints defender. (Getty)

DeAndre Hopkins is arguably the best wide receiver in football.

He also appears to have a pro wrestling career in his future if he wants a change of pace.

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The Houston Texans wide receiver channeled his inner “Monday Night Raw” in Monday’s season opener against the New Orleans Saints on a Deshaun Watson interception.

DeAndre Hopkins slams Saints defender into turf

Saints safety Marcus Williams picked off Watson’s deep pass intended for Will Fuller, leaving Hopkins as the first line of defense against a return.

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There was no return.

Hopkins chased down Williams, grabbed him by his torso and drove him to the turf with a suplex that would have made Ric Flair proud.

The play immediately drew the attention of officials who rained yellow flags down upon the aftermath of the play.

Should he have been penalized?

Unsportsmanlike contact. 15 yards. The Saints started their drive at the Texans’ 36-yard line and quickly scored the go-ahead touchdown to take a 24-17 lead.

It was certainly an extraordinary tackle and an exceptionally violent play by Hopkins. But this is football — a game that’s exceptionally violent by nature — and there was nothing to indicate that Hopkins’ intent was to do anything but down the man with the ball.

Hopkins wasn’t clear after the game why he drew a penalty.

“I didn’t know I couldn’t tackle like that,” Hopkins said. “The ref said you can’t tackle like that. I guess I’ll play touch next time, tag.”

Should Hopkins have been flagged on the play?

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