Whitney Mercilus: Why Rangers' second goal against Hibs should have been disallowed

Houston Texans pass rusher Whitney Mercilus couldn't believe Rangers' second goal against Hibs was allowed to stand.

Houston Texans linebacker Whitney Mercilus has told the Edinburgh Evening News that Kenny Miller's second goal for Rangers against Hibernian last weekend should have been disallowed.

Mercilus, 24, was selected 26th overall in 2012 NFL Draft by the Houston Texans having impressed in college at Illinois, and currently plays linebacker for Bill O'Brien's team.

Yet away from the gridiron, Mercilus has a keen interest in football, and bizarrely appears to have adopted Hibernian as his favourite team.

Mercilus attended Hibs' home game against Rangers last Sunday, but it ended in disaster for Alan Stubbs' men as Rangers walked away with a 2-0 win.

Yet whilst Rangers were celebrating, Mercilus wasn't too impressed with the build-up to Kenny Miller's goal to put Rangers 2-0 up late on.

The ball was sent forward into the Hibs box, but Lee Wallace appeared to foul a Hibs defender who was trying to clear the ball. It fell to Miller, and as the ref played on, Miller slotted the ball into the net to give Rangers a 2-0 lead and put the game beyond doubt.

However, Mercilus told the Edinburgh Evening Times that the tackle would have even been a foul in the NFL, it was that bad.

"Tackling is my job, so I loved the tackle in the build-up to the second goal. It was pretty awesome to see that – I would have been proud of that. The Hibbies didn’t love it, I understand that," said Mercilus. "When I saw it I thought: ‘Whoa, we’re not in American football’. I was surprised the referee let it go."

"In American football a challenge like that would be picked up quickly, the yellow flags would be flying. There’d be a penalty and your coach would be kicking your butt. It would be horrible."

"But, you only have one referee and two at the side so maybe you need a few more eyes. I can see why players get into fights with referees all the time. I would if I was playing soccer," he added.

With the NFL in the off-season until the summer when pre-season starts, Mercilus may end up watching more football in the coming weeks and months - but maybe won't be tuning in to watch Rangers very often.

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