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Bears WR Javon Wims’ 2 rights make 1 big wrong

The third-year wide receiver was ejected in the third quarter of the Bears’ 26-23 overtime loss Sunday after punching Saints safety C.J. Gardner-Johnson in the helmet — twice — while the ball was on the other side of the field.

Bears coach Matt Nagy, left, questions Javon Wims after his ejection Sunday.
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The Bears lost their second game in six days, but Javon Wims made sure they were embarrassed along the way.

The third-year wide receiver was ejected in the third quarter of the Bears’ 26-23 overtime loss Sunday after punching Saints safety C.J. Gardner-Johnson in the helmet — twice — while the ball was on the other side of the field.

The punches had no place on a football field — or anywhere but UFC’s “Fight Island.” And never mind the wisdom of punching a helmet with one’s bare hands.

When quarterback Nick Foles threw a five-yard pass left to Allen Robinson, Wims was split far right, matched up against cornerback Janoris Jenkins. When the play appeared over, he walked to Gardner-Johnson, who had his back turned.

When Gardner-Johnson turned slightly, Wims hit him in the helmet with his right hand. Gardner-Johnson did nothing — he left his arms to his side deliberately — then Wims punched him again with his right hand.

On Instagram, Gardner-Johnson called it a “cheap shot,” and cornerback Marshon Lattimore said it was a “dirty play.”

About two minutes into the second half, Gardner-Johnson ripped Wims orange mouthpiece — which was attached to his facemask and dangling out of his mouth — and threw it to the ground. NFL Network reported Wims told the Bears that Gardner-Johnson spat at him. Wims was not made available to explain himself Sunday night.

If Wims is lucky enough to still be employed at the end of the week — coach Matt Nagy called his punches “completely unacceptable” — he’ll surely be fined by the league. A suspension is possible.

“One of Javon’s strengths is his character, who he is as a person,” Nagy said. “He’s since apologized, but that’s not . . . you don’t have that. There’s no part of that in this game. . . . That’s not how we roll here.”

The Bears were docked 15 yards. Faced with a second-and-20 instead of a second-and-five, Foles threw a pass to tight end Jimmy Graham that was intercepted.

“There was a lot of crazy that went on there that I don’t know who or what happened,” Foles said. ‘‘But specifically on the pick, I’ve got to get a better ball to Jimmy.”

Nagy was disturbed by Wims’ actions. In his postgame news conference, he steered the conversation back to it over and over again.

“I am really, really bothered by that third-quarter incident,” he said. “That bothers me. I’m being completely honest with you guys. It bothers me.”

This isn’t new territory for Gardner-Johnson, who was the player teammate Michael Thomas punched in practice last month, leading to a one-game suspension. Last year against the Bears, Gardner-Johnson clowned Tarik Cohen by holding his hand flat, as if to measure how tall the 5-6 running back was.

No agitation, though, could possibly merit Wims’ response.

“[You can’t] have somebody throwing punches [with] the things that are going on right now with us and the offense and just trying to get things going,’’ Nagy said. “Guys are fighting, sticking together. But then you have that happen. It takes away everything that you work hard to get to and fight for. And what bothers me is we’ve got a lot of good guys that are doing things the right way — and then it just takes it away.”

Defensive lineman Akiem Hicks, who was ejected from a game in 2018 for making contact with an official, said that, no matter the emotion, Wims needs to control himself.

“I think that I’ve lost my cool before, ya know?” he said. “It’s part of the game. The elite, and if you want to be elite, you have to be able to control some of those moments. You have to be able to put whatever emotion you’ve got going on in a pocket. Because your team needs more.

“And knowing the character of Javon, I know that he doesn’t want to have a situation that might go sour. With a lot of respect for him, I understand that things happen, and we’ll move forward.”