Aqib Talib Eye Poke Earns Denver Broncos Star A Suspension

The Aqib Talib eye poke was one of the most-discussed incidents in the NFL this past weekend, and it has earned the Denver Broncos defensive back a one game suspension, as reported by ESPN.

After Indianapolis Colts running back Frank Gore gained two yards on a rushing play, tight end Dwayne Allen and Broncos linebacker Von Miller got into a heated argument. Talib decided to intervene on behalf of his teammate. He ended up poking Allen in the eye with his fingers.

Talib claims that the eye poke was not intentional. The 6-foot-1, 205 pound corner back claims that he was simply going over there to push Allen away. To his credit, he does admit that he never should have gotten involved in the situation in the first place.

As is often the case whenever an NFL player gets suspended, an appeal is going to be filed. The Aqib Talib eye poke situation is no exception. The Ohio native has already informed Merton Hanks, who is the Vice President of Football Operations for the NFL, of his intentions.

The appeal will be heard on Tuesday. Wednesday should be the day that the NFL makes a decision and an announcement. Talib is hoping to have his punishment reduced so that he can play against the Kansas City Chiefs on November 15.

Aqib Talib
The Aqib Talib eye poke incident might cause the top-ranked Denver Broncos defense to be without one of their top stars. [Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images]
While he certainly does not want to hurt his team by not being there, Aqib Talib also has financial reasons for wanting to play in the game against the Chiefs. Missing out on the game would mean that he misses out on a $323,529.41 paycheck. Talib is scheduled to make $5.5 million for the year.

Aqib Talib is not asking to be completely exonerated of the eye poke incident. He admits that he deserves to be punished for what happened to Allen. Talib just feels that he should be fined instead.

Interestingly enough, Derrick Brooks has been assigned by the NFL to officiate the appeal. Talib and Brooks played together when both were with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. League officials are not concerned that their past relationship is going to affect the appeal.

The Aqib Talib eye poke has not caused the Denver Broncos to lose support from their players. Both head coach Gary Kubiak and team president John Elway have come out in support of Talib. They both would love to see him on the field when they play the Chiefs.

Dwayne Allen
Dwayne Allen could have been seriously injured by the Aqib Talib eye poke. [Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images]
Privately, though, the timing of the eye poke incident should be cause of concern for the Broncos. The penalty enabled the Colts to bypass a critical third down situation. Indianapolis ended up beating Denver by a score of 27 to 24, and Talib’s mishap was a big part of that.

The Broncos are the top defense in the NFL, and a lot of that is because Talib and Chris Harris Jr. are able to lock down opposing wide receivers. If the one game suspension is upheld, then Denver will be forced to give more snaps to Bradley Roby, Kayvon Webster and Lorenzo Doss, guys who are obviously not on the same level as Talib.

Denver has relied heavily on the defense this year because starting quarterback Peyton Manning has not been playing up to expectations. His quarterback rating thus far is 75.6. Manning has scored over 100 in quarterback ratings since signing with the Broncos.

At 7-1, Denver has a comfortable lead in the AFC West. However, the game against the Chiefs, who should be hungry because they are 3-5 and trying to save the season, still means a lot to the Broncos. They trail the New England Patriots and Cincinnati Bengals, both of whom are 8-0, in the conference.

[Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images ]