CFL suspends Saskatchewan Roughriders’ DL Pete Robertson one game for headbutting Zach Collaros

Photo: Timothy Matwey/3DownNation. All rights reserved.

The CFL made a fast disciplinary decision following Sunday’s Labour Day Classic between the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Saskatchewan Roughriders, suspending defensive lineman Pete Robertson one game for his headbutt on Zach Collaros.

The incident occurred during the fourth quarter of the game and initially went unpenalized before the command centre stepped in to assess a 15-yard penalty for unnecessary roughness. Robertson headbutted Collaros well after the play was over, seemingly in celebration of his defence forcing an incompletion on second down.

Robertson’s penalty gave Winnipeg a fresh set of downs deep in Saskatchewan territory and Brady Oliveira scored on a two-yard touchdown run on the following play, giving Winnipeg a 24-20 lead with 4:05 remaining in the game.

Collaros, who has been vocally critical of the league’s failure to protect quarterbacks in the past, was clearly upset after the game. Head coach Mike O’Shea also expressed his frustration, calling the situation “ridiculous.”

Saskatchewan head coach Craig Dickenson said he was disappointed that Robertson took a penalty at such a critical juncture of the game, though he hadn’t seen video of the headbutt before speaking to the media. The hit was not shown on the video screens at Mosaic Stadium.

The Riders won Sunday’s game in overtime by a score of 32-30 after losing the two most recent Labour Day Classics to their prairie foes. Second-year quarterback Jake Dolegala threw for 326 yards in his third career start and avoided turning the ball over for the second consecutive week.

Robertson will serve the suspension during next week’s Banjo Bowl, the annual rematch between the two teams. It is unclear if he will appeal the suspension.

Saskatchewan (6-5) has a six-point lead on the Calgary Stampeders (3-8) for the third and final playoff spot in the West Division. The club currently sits four points behind the B.C. Lions (8-4) for second and six points behind Winnipeg (9-3) for first.