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Pittsburgh Steelers offensive lineman Chukwuma Okorafor was torn on social media Thursday night after a bizarre decision to run into Cleveland Browns linebacker Anthony Walker Jr. when he was already down.
The game happened in the third quarter with the Steelers leading the Browns 14-13. Steelers quarterback Mitchell Trubisky threw a short pass to Jaylen Warren, who made some moves and gained 35 yards on the play. Okorafor was called for a penalty for being ineligible on the field as Walker writhed from pain.
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Cleveland medical staff attended to Walker, and when the show returned from a commercial, a medical cart had come out for Walker and his left leg was put in a splint.
The replay of the incident showed Okorafor throwing a fierce block at Walker, who immediately fell. About two seconds passed and the replay showed Okorafor jumping on the back of Walker, who was already face down.
Walker was on the medical cart and Okorafor came to see him. Walker was then kicked out.
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Okorafor came under scrutiny for what appeared to be an unnecessary pancake on the defender.
Okorafor, 25, was a 2018 third-round draft pick in Western Michigan. He’s started in 37 of the Steelers’ 38 games that start Thursday.
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Walker, 27, was a 2017 fifth-round draft pick from Northwestern. He joined the Browns in 2021 from the Indianapolis Colts. He played 15 games with the Browns.