DETROIT — Matt Schaub is taking one unique pounding this season. First, the Houston Texans quarterback loses a piece of his ear on a dirty hit in Denver.
Now, he's taken a shot to the groin from the Detroit Lions' biggest, baddest defensive player in front of a national Thanksgiving audience. Specifically, a kick from Ndamukong Suh.
Suh has something of a problem with Thanksgiving kicks of course. He made himself the villain of the league last Thanksgiving when he was ejected from the holiday game for stomping on Green Bay offensive lineman Evan Dietrich-Smith.
Still, the slow-motion replay of kick doesn't leave Suh coming up roses.
That kick created a national firestorm.
This one may have been unintentional. As he was getting twisted around by Texans right tackle Derek Newton, Suh's leg swung up and connected right where it could hurt Schaub most. The quarterback gingerly hobbled around for a few moments, but didn't go to the ground.
It could have been an accident and Schaub didn't make any move toward Suh in anger.
Still, the slow-motion replay of kick doesn't exactly leave Suh coming up roses. It appears that Suh already might be on the ground when he makes a second quick, short kicking motion back, which is the one that connects with Schaub's groin.
If Suh is that aware of what's going on around him, he's a genius of mayhem. He'd never admit to that though and it seems unlikely that the league could say this was clearly intentional.
CBS analyst Boomer Esiason has no such qualms though. He felt that it was clear that Suh kicked back toward Schaub on purpose. "I would never shake that guy's hand," Esiason said.
Either way, for Schaub, it's just more of paying with his body for the season of his life.
At least Schaub is still playing. The already banged-up Texans lost starting right tackle Derek Newton (right knee) and starting linebacker Brooks Reed (groin) to injury during the first half. This for a team that's being hounded by all-pro cornerback Johnathan Joseph's sidelining injury (see Calvin Johnson's monster stats).