The NFL Referees Association said Wednesday that it expects umpire Roy Ellison to be cleared after an NFL review of a confrontation between him and Buffalo Bills defensive end Jerry Hughes following Sunday's game against the Miami Dolphins.
"Video from last week's game shows [Ellison] was verbally threatened by a player who has a well-documented history of abusive language and inappropriate actions towards our officials," NFLRA executive director Scott Green said in a statement. "While we are disappointed that the NFL has yet to address that aspect of the incident, we look forward to working with the League during its review and will ensure that Roy's rights are protected during this process."
The NFL on Tuesday placed Ellison on administrative leave as it continued to review the matter. Hughes will not be suspended, a source told ESPN's Adam Schefter.
Video shows Hughes yelling at an official in the tunnel of Hard Rock Stadium after Buffalo's 21-17 loss to Miami. Hughes accused the official of calling him a "b----." He was later restrained by a team staff member and a teammate as he continued to shout at the official, "I'll catch you."
Ellison, in his 16th year as an NFL official, was previously suspended one game without pay in 2013 for allegedly making a profane and derogatory statement to Washington Redskins offensive lineman Trent Williams.
Following that 2013 game against the Philadelphia Eagles, Williams said Ellison cussed him out during a Redskins drive late in the first half, an accusation teammates backed. Williams said Ellison walked by him after a play and called him a "garbage-ass, disrespectful m-----f-----."
Hughes denied Sunday's confrontation to reporters in the locker room shortly after. He also said he did "not recall" whether an official called him a "b----" during the game.
"Who did? I did what?" Hughes said. "What did I say? If I did go up to the official, what did I say?" When told there was video of the confrontation, the ninth-year player repeated to reporters, "I would love to see the video."