Bears quarterback Justin Fields did not hesitate to call Lions linebacker Alex Anzalone a dirty player

Justin Fields appeared on Amon-Ra St. Brown's podcast this week, and the Bears quarterback called a Lions' defensive player dirty.
Detroit Lions v Chicago Bears
Detroit Lions v Chicago Bears / Michael Reaves/GettyImages

With his future with the Chicago Bears in doubt, Justin Fields' appearance on "The St. Brown Bros." podcast this week was sure to be interesting. His unfollowing of the Bears on social media was a topic, and he did explain it if that's of interest to you. Essentially, he said (as players who do that tend to) "there's nothing to see here", like no one will notice and it's a surprise someone did.

But appearing with his teammate (for now) Equanimeous St. Brown, and Lions' wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown, talk about the Bears-Lions rivalry was sure to happen too. They trio had a playful back-and-forth about officiating in general, then Fields went down a specific road.

"Y'all (the Lions) play harder than most teams," Fields said. "I will say that, y'all play harder and through the whistle, and y'all got some dirty players on your team, I'm not gonna cap." 

That last part naturally sparked a response from Amon-Ra St. Brown.

"No we don't," said Amon-Ra St. Brown. "Who's dirty?"

Justin Fields calls Lions linebacker Alex Anzalone a dirty player

To his credit, given who he was talking to, Fields did not hesitate to name names (actually a jersey number, then a name).

"34 bro, Anzalone, bro," Fields replied. "He be doing a little bit too much extra stuff for me, dog. I'm cool with the competitive, I'm cool with that. But all the extra stuff, like I'm cool with all that. Tackle me and get up." 

St. Brown of course defended his teammate, pointing to Anzalone as displaying the Lions' signature "grit" trait and how he plays hard.

In the wake of Kerby Joseph's controversial low hit on Los Angeles Rams tight end in the Divisional Round playoff game in January, Anzalone had a comment that went beyond defending his teammate. That comment wasn't worthy of calling him a dirty player on its own, but Fields alluding to "too much extra stuff" that toes the line also isn't necessarily surprising.

It's a slippery slope to call an opposing player a dirty player. But Fields would not be the first person to suggest it about Anzalone in the last couple months. Former Bears' scout Greg Gabriel also did so after the Lions' linebacker got a penalty for a late hit against Chicago in Week 14 last season.

“Anzalone has been a cheap shot player going back to college,” Gabriel wrote on Twitter.

A reputation as a dirty player never leaves those who get one. Anzalone doesn't seem to be all the way there yet, Bill Romanowski-style, but it doesn't seem to going the right direction with Fields having no hesitation to name him.

The conversation about the Lions and Anzalone starts at about the 9:30 mark of video below.

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