Germaine Pratt responds to backlash for calling out Joseph Ossai


Bengals linebacker Germaine Pratt let his emotions get the best of him after a heartbreaking loss to the Chiefs in the AFC Championship game on Sunday.

While walking into the locker room after the game, Pratt was caught on video screaming expletives over the penalty on Cincinnati defensive end Joseph Ossai for hitting Patrick Mahomes out of bounds in the final minute — which set up the Chiefs’ 45-yard game-winning field goal at Arrowhead Stadium.

“It’s the motherf–kin’ last series,” Pratt can be heard yelling in the now-viral footage. “Why the f–k you touch the quarterback?”

On Monday, Pratt first responded on social media, blaming others for the backlash over his “raw” reaction. But while talking to the press later in the day, he opened up on where he went wrong.

Warning: Graphic Language

“I was in the moment,” Pratt said. “I was wrong. I would say I was wrong. As a man, you can look yourself in the mirror and say, ‘I was wrong.’ I wasn’t a great teammate in that moment. That doesn’t define me as a man.

“It’s a reaction that anybody has that’s a competitor. You know what was at stake in that moment. I love this game, no doubt about it. They talk about my character as a teammate. Some people never played this game. They don’t know how much effort guys put in the game.”

When asked if he had spoken to Ossai since the AFC Championship loss, Pratt said he “went around and talked to every guy” postgame.

Ossai was visibly upset after the loss and was seen crying on Cincinnati’s bench as his teammates consoled him. The 22-year-old Texas product was also in tears in the locker room, and defensive tackle BJ Hill stood by Ossai’s side as he answered questions from reporters.

“I have to be better,” Ossai said Sunday. “I was just in full chase-mode. “And trying to push [Patrick Mahomes] to maybe get him go backwards [out of bounds] and get that clock running … I’ve got to know not to get close to that quarterback when he gets close to that sideline.”

Pratt, who is a free agent this offseason, said he’s looking forward to the time ahead with his kids and fiancée.

Joseph Ossai pushes Patrick Mahomes out of bounds in the AFC Championship Game

Bengals linebacker Joseph Ossai after a loss to the Chiefs in the AFC Championship game on Jan.  29, 2023.
Bengals linebacker Joseph Ossai after a loss to the Chiefs in the AFC Championship game on Jan. 29, 2023.

“The brotherhood we built around here is unmatched,” Pratt said. “It’s unstoppable. Nobody can break us no matter how many people try to throw dirt on your name in the media, nobody can stop that. I want to be back here.”


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