Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle Josh Tupou celebrated his first career NFL sack moments after he took down Tua Tagovailoa on Thursday night.
The following day, Tupou admitted he had "mixed emotions" after his tackle on Tagovailoa caused the Miami Dolphins quarterback's head and upper back to hit the turf hard and his fingers to spasm in an odd manner.
Tagovailoa, 24, was down on the field for approximately 10 minutes before being taken by ambulance to the University of Cincinnati Medical Center.
"I was excited to get my first sack, but at the same time it's tainted because I didn't want to hurt Tua. I never intended to hurt him," the 28-year-old Tupou said Friday.
"I was just trying to make a rolling tackle and his head hit the ground. I don't know him. I just know he's another Polynesian brother. I never want to hurt anybody in the NFL."
Tupou started Thursday's game in place of the injured D.J. Reader, who sustained a knee injury in last Sunday's game against the New York Jets. Tupou recorded three tackles in addition to his sack in the Bengals' 27-15 win over the Dolphins.
"Even though it was a good moment for me, it was a hard moment for him and his family to see him the way he was," Tupou said. "His health overrides my sack."
Tupou has 55 tackles, one forced fumble and that one sack in 44 career games (19 starts) with the Bengals.
--Field Level Media