Heath Reaches Out To Seahawks WR; But "Not Apologizing For Playing Hard"

IRVING, Texas– Unsure if he will be getting fined for his hit that injured the Seattle receiver last week, safety Jeff Heath did make sure to reach out to Ricardo Lockette.

The Seahawks receiver and special teams contributor suffered torn ligaments in his neck, requiring season-ending surgery on Monday in Dallas.

Heath, who was flagged for a blind-side hit on Lockette, was able to acquire his cell phone number from Cowboys teammate Brice Butler.

"I texted him, I haven't received a response," Heath said of Lockette. "I just told him that I have a lot of respect for how he plays. He's really tenacious and aggressive. I really like how he plays. I just wish him a speedy recovery. I think he knows, but I just told him my intention wasn't to hurt him. I hated the outcome of the play. I just wished him a speedy recovery."

While it appeared Heath hit Lockette straight-on, even giving the Seattle receiver a quick moment to embrace the hit, it was categorized by the officials as a blind-side hit.

[embeddedad0]Sources within Valley Ranch said it's expected the NFL will issue a fine to Heath.

Fine or not, the Cowboys safety said that play can't and won't change his style of play.

"No, not at all," Heath said. "I'm not going to apologize for playing hard. I'm not going to apologize for the hit. I don't like the outcome of the hit, but that's my job. The second that you start having that little voice in the back of your head telling you, 'remember what happened last time …' or whatever, it'll slow you down and you're not going to be able to do your job."

After reviewing the play, Heath says he's still unsure about the nature of the rule.

"I think it's a judgement call on the referee's part," Heath said. "From the film, I felt that I was moving forward. It's kind of a freak deal. I'm sure they'll have an explanation for what the flag is."  

Nick Eatman is the author of the recently published *If These Walls Could Talk: Dallas Cowboys, a collection of stories from the Cowboys' locker room, sideline and press box, with a foreword written by Darren Woodson.*

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