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Seahawks’ Quinton Jefferson explains exactly why he charged the stands in Jacksonville

Seahawks defensive tackle Quinton Jefferson, center, said he tried to climb up in the stands in Jacksonville on Sunday after a fan made a vile comment about his mother. Jefferson was ejected for fighting in the final seconds of Seattle’s 30-24 loss to the Jaguars.
Seahawks defensive tackle Quinton Jefferson, center, said he tried to climb up in the stands in Jacksonville on Sunday after a fan made a vile comment about his mother. Jefferson was ejected for fighting in the final seconds of Seattle’s 30-24 loss to the Jaguars. AP

RENTON Quinton Jefferson said a grotesque comment about his mother after a fan threw beer on him from near the tunnel leading from the field in Jacksonville is why he continued charging the stands to confront the man last weekend.

Jefferson talked at his locker Wednesday before his Seahawks practiced for Sunday’s NFC West showdown with the first-place Los Angeles Rams. He was asked if he heard a racial slur directed at him by a fan--as teammate Jarran Reed posted online on his Twitter account following Seattle’s 30-24 loss at the Jaguars last Sunday.

“I honestly don’t know,” the second-year defensive tackle said. “There were a lot of people saying a lot of different stuff, so I didn’t really tune in to anything in particular.

“There was only one thing I tuned into in particular: Somebody said they were going to have sex with my mother. That’s the only thing that I can really remember.

“There was a lot of yelling. ... That one thing, that stuck.”

Jefferson was ejected for fighting after one of the Jaguars’ kneel-down plays with 48 seconds remaining in their win. On his way off the field, fans threw beer and other liquid at Jefferson before and after he charged the padded wall of the stands at grabbed a railing as if to climb into the fans’ seating area. A Seahawks staffer finally pulled him down and escorted him into the locker room.

“When the first thing was thrown, I went to go confront the guy,” Jefferson said. “And he’s talking about he’s going to (have sex with) my mother, and all that.”

Jefferson, 24, is a native of the Pittsburgh area who is married with twin daughters, Charleigh and Quinn, born in 2014 while he was playing for the University of Maryland. He has another daughter, Zoey, five years older, from a previous relationship. He said that is why it was difficult for him to watch that video above of what he did and what happened in Jacksonville.

“It was a little hard. It was even worse, you know, because I’ve got kids,” Jefferson said. “My wife saw it. She was upset about it, and everything.

“I felt even more for them, because they had to watch that.”

Coach Pete Carroll said Monday the NFL was investigating Jefferson’s conduct, plus Michael Bennett diving into the back of Jaguars center Brandon Linder’s legs well after a previous kneel-down snap and Seahawks defensive lineman Sheldon Richardson throwing a punch at the helmet of Jacksonville running back Leonard Fournette following Bennett’s dive at Linder. Richardson was also disqualified.

But Carroll said the league has told the Seahawks there will be no suspensions stemming from the end of the game in Jacksonville.

That is a huge break for Seattle. It needs every defensive player it can have for Sunday’s game against the Rams (9-4), which will determine the division winner and give the victor at least one home playoff game. The Seahawks (8-5) have five Pro Bowl players injured: cornerback Richard Sherman, safety Kam Chancellor and end Cliff Avril are out for the season; linebackers Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright will likely be game-time decisions on playing because of a hamstring injury and concussion, respectively.

Carroll said Monday he talked to Jefferson about his conduct at the end of the Jacksonville game.

“I thought that was wrong. Wrong. He was wrong,” Carroll said. “I’ve talked to him about it. And we are professional athletes and people can say whatever they want to say, and that’s kind of what just comes along with it. You have to be able to deal with it professionally, and he lost it.

“He feels terrible about it. That’s not the kind of kid he is and emotionally, he got overrun and he lost it. Fortunately, people restrained him and all that. It’s a tremendous learning opportunity for him and the young guys.”

Jefferson said he was glad to avoid a suspension. He didn’t sound remorseful for what started all the ugliness, though.

“Yeah, I’m happy to hear that, man,” he said. “I kind of figured, because nobody did anything wrong. So, if you go back and actually watch the film and see, none of us did anything wrong. We are down by six. And we are playing to the last play. I mean, we still have the chance to win. And it’s a football down. So they have the ball, I don’t see anything wrong with us coming off the ball and playing football. And even Mike’s play, Mike’s trying to swipe out the ball. We are trying to get the ball back and win the game.

“So I wasn’t surprised.”

As for what his coach told him, Jefferson said: “Yeah, we talked something about it. It’s just one of those things. It’s unfortunate. Wish it didn’t get that far. Wish it didn’t happen. But it was one of those things that happened.

“Ultimately, we’ve got to learn from it. We’ve got to get ready for L.A.”

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