Slater, Rhule react to Patriots' latest fight with Panthers originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
The first fight of the day occurred after Panthers safety Kenny Robinson stood over Kristian Wilkerson after appearing to hit the Patriots wide receiver on a return play. Wilkerson and Robinson were both ejected from Tuesday's joint practice for fighting one another.
Patriots veteran wide receiver Matthew Slater approached the Panthers' sideline after seeing Robinson taunt Wilkerson.
"Look, I got a teammate down on the field who's now being medically evaluated off-site. I mean, that's cause for concern," Slater said when asked about his reaction to Robinson's actions in a post-practice press conference. "We're not gonna sit here and celebrate those types of plays. That's not how you do it."
As for the fight that occurred after the play, Slater said that he was not afraid to stick up for his injured teammate, but did not want to start a fight.
"I mean look I ain't fighting. I have four kids. My wife's out here. What do I look like? I'm 36 years old. I'm not throwing no punches."
"But again, when you have a teammate who is hit. He's down. There's clear symptoms of what's happened to him," Slater continued. "He's demonstrating those symptoms, and then you have players celebrating that act. I take an issue with that, and I don't have a problem saying that."
Matt Rhule, the Panthers' head coach, was also asked about the incident after Wednesday's practice.
"The decision of one or two guys impacts a lot of different people," Rhule said. "We sent Kenny off the field. I didn't really see the hit, but I did see him standing over the player. That's not how we want to practice. Things happen in football. There were some good, clean hits, but we don't stand over somebody and taunt them."
Robinson has disrupted practice for two days in a row, and the Panthers' coaches have taken notice.
"We'll have to talk about it," Rhule responded after he was asked if Robinson could be cut as a result of his behavior during the joint practices.
Hopefully, the Patriots' competitiveness during practice will translate to Friday's game against the Panthers.