Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Vance McDonald sent social media into a frenzy after administering a vicious stiff-arm of Tampa Bay Buccaneers safety Chris Conte before scoring a 75-yard touchdown in the first quarter of Monday’s game.
McDonald, who weighs 267 pounds, lowered the boom on the 203-pound Conte to turn a 20-yard completion into Pittsburgh’s first score in a 30-27 victory.
“Punish him. Inflict as much force on him as possible. That’s the first thing I think of,” the 28-year-old McDonald said, via ESPN.
“I love contact. If a DB or a safety wants to take me up high, God bless him. Because I’m going to hit him hard. That’s my goal. A lot of times I don’t think about using the stiff arm, but he was slow-playing it so much. He gave me a big target.”
Conte’s night ended with that hit, as he was ruled out for the rest of the contest with a knee injury.
McDonald finished with four receptions for a career-best 112 yards for the Steelers (1-1-1), who received a mammoth performance from fellow tight end Jesse James in last week’s 42-37 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.
The 6-foot-7, 261-pound James hauled in five catches for 138 yards and a touchdown. Not only was it a career high in yardage, but it marked James’ first 100-yard game.