NEW YORK — The NFL has suspended Vikings safety Andrew Sendejo for one game for violating player safety rules in Sunday's win against the Baltimore Ravens.
Sendejo's hit on Ravens receiver Mike Wallace on Baltimore's seconds series of the game was directly to the head. Wallace's helmet flew off during the collision, and Sendejo was penalized for unnecessary roughness.
In his letter to Sendejo, Jon Runyan, the NFL's vice president of football operations, wrote:
"The violation was flagrant and warrants a suspension because it could have been avoided, was violently directed at the head and neck area and unreasonably placed both you and an opposing player at risk of serious injury."
Sendejo will be eligible to return to the active roster next Monday. He will miss Minnesota's game in London against the Cleveland Browns.
But he can appeal the suspension within three business days.
Vikings coach Mike Zimmer saw the play a bit differently.
"I think the receiver took five steps after he caught the ball," Zimmer said of Wallace. "I think he hit him with a glancing blow. I know what (the officials) told me, but I'm going to turn it in to the league and see what they say. He established position as a runner, took two extra steps. Xavier (Rhodes) was trying to pull the ball out, which he ended up doing. The guy went down a little bit. But in my opinion, he was a runner."