While Mac Jones and the running game were superb, the New England Patriots‘ defense rightly stole all the headlines following the team’s 25-0 shutout over the Atlanta Falcons on Thursday Night Football.
The entire group came to play, but the likes of Matt Judon, Kyle Dugger, Christian Barmore and Kyle Van Noy were the clear standouts.
Judon proved why he’s a Defensive Player of the Year candidate, Dugger made some mouth-watering open field tackles, Barmore was once again unblockable in the trenches, and Van Noy did a little bit of everything.
In regard to Van Noy, he’s been an unsung hero on the Patriots’ defense this year, so it was awesome to see him have a signature moment with a defensive touchdown in the waning moments of the fourth quarter.
Unfortunately for him, however, his dominant showing in primetime prompted the NFL to hit him with a random drug test.
The 30-year-old linebacker took to Twitter to share his reaction, which was priceless.
Patriots LB Kyle Van Noy got drug tested after Week 11
Some reward for turning in your best performance of the season, right?
Van Noy’s test is just further evidence that the NFL is hell-bent on catching players in the act of using performance-enhancers. We get the league wants PEDs out of the game for good, but surely there’s a more professional way to go about testing players, right? A random test is pretty insulting, as Van Noy eluded to during his Friday appearance on the “Pat McAfee Show.”
“I was pissed,” Van Noy said. “I’m like, ‘I got three hours of sleep. What the hell is this dude texting me talking about I’ve got a (drug) test already?’” After realizing why he was being tested, though, Van Noy decided to take his own version of a victory lap.
“I felt good about myself for a little bit. I was like, ‘Man, this is what it feels like to be Myles Garrett.’”
Van Noy now joins Saints defensive lineman Cameron Jordan, Jaguars kicker (!) Matthew Wright, and Browns edge rusher Myles Garrett as players who have expressed their frustration with the NFL’s drug testing policy.
We suppose that’s what happens when you notch eight tackles (two for loss), two sacks, two quarterback hits, four run stops, and an interception returned for a touchdown.
Given that Van Noy was able to laugh this off, he’d likely welcome another drug test if it means contributing to another Patriots’ shutout.