Chicago Bears defensive tackle Henry Melton had some choice words for the Detroit Lions on Wednesday, calling them a dirty team both on offense and defense. In particular, Melton said Detroit’s offensive linemen talk trash and throw cheap shots. He singled out Lions center Dominic Raiola, calling him “old” and accusing him of using cuss words and playing dirty. Needless to say, the comments did not sit well with Raiola.
“Who? Who?” Raiola said Thursday according to the Detroit Free Press. “Exactly. You got a defense full of superstars, and you don’t hear from the guys that carry weight in my book. (Brian) Urlacher, (Lance) Briggs, (Charles) Tillman, (Israel) Idonije, older guys. (Julius) Peppers. The guys that have been there. We’re talking about guys who carry weight. This guy? Not in my book.”
Melton is in his fourth NFL season and was recently named to the NFC Pro Bowl roster. He may not have as much pull in the locker room as some of the aforementioned veterans, but he’s obviously recognized as one of the better defensive tackles in the NFC. Raiola doesn’t see it that way.
“I mean, this guy, he made it to the Pro Bowl?” Raiola asked. “This guy made the Pro Bowl? (Over) Kevin Williams, who worked through injuries all year? (Over Nadmukong) Suh, who’s a better player than this guy? Come on.
“It’s tiresome, especially from a guy like this, a guy that didn’t even play the past two weeks. … I don’t know what to say anymore. In my book, he’s a clown. That’s all I got.”
As Bart Scott could tell you, Raiola does not like it when people talk about his team. Personally, I don’t feel as though there was a need for Melton to say anything. The Lions are 4-11 while the Bears are hunting for a playoff spot. The last thing Chicago needs to do is give its opponents something to play for.