The brawl between New Orleans Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore and Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans isn’t anything new — here’s their history.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New Orleans Saints were deadlocked in a 3-3 contest. The Buccaneers offense faltered as they struggled to bring this NFC South rivalry back to life. Tom Brady was so frustrated that he destroyed a tablet à la Bill Belichick.
Then, as NFL Films would put it, the game saw an undeniable turning point: when Mike Evans and Marshon Lattimore struck one another and an all-out brawl ensued.
Both Evans and Lattimore were disqualified from the game, and Evans was so peeved that he shoved a camera following him to the locker room. Saints fans cheered on Lattimore as he headed to the locker room in the Caesars Superdome, but the “WHO DAT” chants fell silent once vintage Jameis Winston emerged and the Buccaneers made the most of three turnovers.
The final game score was 20-10, but it doesn’t seem like the score between Evans and Lattimore has been settled — nor will it be. Here’s where one of the nastiest intradivisional rivalries started between a star wideout and defensive back.
What happened between Marshon Lattimore and Mike Evans
As detailed below, there’s been a longstanding rivalry not only between the Bucs and Saints, but also between Lattimore and Evans individually.
Lattimore started to be openly chippy with the Bucs sideline, as Bruce Arians and fellow Bucs coaches shouted back and waved him away, and a referee came to intercede.
Then, at12:49 in the fourth quarter, Brady and Lattimore exchanged words. Bucs running back Leonard Fournette got involved, shoving into Lattimore. Lattimore pushes back, Fournette shoved his facemask.
Eventually, Evans came barreling towards Lattimore, slamming into him and sending him to the ground. That’s when things really got out of hand.
Here are a few more angles of the fight, as well as a continuation of the on-field brawl involving players of both teams.
This resulted in Evans and Lattimore being disqualified from the remainder of the game, but no matter: the Bucs collected themselves, while the Saints remained rattled.
The Saints defense that held the Bucs all game fell apart, with Brady connecting with Breshad Perriman in the endzone for his first touchdown of the day. A minute after the brawl, Winston threw his first of three interceptions, and the close game fell apart for the Saints.
A beef history between Marshon Lattimore and Mike Evans
Oddly enough, what happened between Evans and Lattimore is almost an exact replay of what happened between the two six years ago.
Back in 2017, Lattimore was a rookie with the Saints, and Evans was playing in his fourth NFL season with the Buccaneers.
Like many of the NFL’s most talented defensive backs, Lattimore has a reputation for talking trash during the game. At some point, this appeared to annoy Jameis Winston, who was the Bucs quarterback at the time.
Winston provoked Lattimore by pointing and touching his helmet, to which Lattimore responded by shoving Winston in the chest. Out of nowhere, Evans crashes into the frame, taking Lattimore to the ground.
Twice, Evans pummeled Lattimore for fighting with his quarterback: first Winston, now Brady.
Evans may seem altruistic in defending his quarterbacks, but in truth, what adds to the animosity between these two is that Marshon Lattimore makes life incredibly hard for Mike Evans when they face off against one another.
It’s now been six years that the two have faced one another, and as Todd Bowles said earlier this week, the Saints have been so much more dominant than the Bucs that their rivalry disappeared.
Add in the fact that Lattimore likes to broadcast his success, and it’s bound to get under Evans’ skin.
Even during the third quarter of this game at 11:44, Lattimore broke up a rainbow pass directed at Evans. Lattimore celebrated while Evans popped up and trotted off without looking in his direction.
Funnily enough, Evans wanted to apologize to Lattimore following the 2017 incident. At the time, Evans referred to his 2017 fight with Lattimore as a “bulls— move” on his part and that it was done “in the heat of the moment,” per ESPN’s Jenna Laine.
“He’s a great player, having a fantastic season. The ball just finds him, a physical corner, a really good player,” Evans said. “It’s gonna be fun to play him again.”
That’s not what Evans has to say in 2022.
“This time, I just was trying to have my teammate’s back,” Evans told reporters following the Sept. 18 game. “All I seen was him punch somebody in the face, like I ain’t gonna let that happen.”
“We know when we come to New Orleans, it gets spicy,” he continued.
For fans of this chippy matchup, it doesn’t seem like it’ll be ending anytime soon — nor that either player regrets it this time.