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Broncos’ Justin Simmons credits Raiders’ Jimmy Garoppolo’s ‘great acting’ for drawing penalty

Broncos’ Justin Simmons credits Raiders’ Jimmy Garoppolo’s ‘great acting’ for drawing penalty
  • PublishedSeptember 14, 2023

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Denver Broncos safety Justin Simmons was flagged for a late hit on Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo in the first half of an AFC West matchup Sunday.

But Simmons contended Wednesday the hit was legal, and he was flagged on the play because of Garoppolo’s “great acting.” 

Garoppolo needed to be cleared to return to the game and later threw a touchdown pass to Jakobi Meyers. Las Vegas won the game, 17-16.

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Jimmy Garoppolo appears to be in pain

Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (10) grimaces in pain after a tackle by Denver Broncos linebacker Frank Clark (55) and safety Justin Simmons (31) at Empower Field at Mile High Sept. 10, 2023. (Andy Cross/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

NFL fans debated online whether Simmons actually hit Garoppolo as Frank Clark dragged him down. The defensive back said he saw a video.

“I guess great acting on Jimmy’s end,” Simmons said. “But if I get a fine … I think anyone who watches that clip can tell there was no force with the helmet. I hit his shoulder pad with my elbow, and I think the rest of what I was aiming for, I ended up hitting either his back or Frank.

Broncos players tackle Jimmy G

Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (10) was hurt and came out for a few plays after he was hit by Denver Broncos safety Justin Simmons (31), top, and linebacker Frank Clark (55), right, during the first quarter at Empower Field Sept. 10, 2023, in Denver, Colo. (TJ Sangosti/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

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“Those types of plays are so bang-bang, critical third down. I’m not really sure how close the yardage was in real time. I don’t make the rules, but I don’t think it was fine worthy. If it was, I’m sure we’ll do a good job with the appeal to that.” 

The Broncos play the Washington Commanders this week.

Justin Simmons and Jimmy G

Jimmy Garoppolo (10) of the Las Vegas Raiders and Justin Simmons (31) of the Denver Broncos have a word after a game at Empower Field at Mile High Sept. 10, 2023, in Denver, Colo. (Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)

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The Commanders eked out a win over the Arizona Cardinals in their season opener.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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