|The NFL may fine you for a hit, but that |
won't stop them from making money off of it.
After a couple days of tough talk about suspensions for helmet-to-helmet hits, the NFL backed down and only issued fines. Not only did they back down from the suspension threats, but they also got the fines completely wrong. Merriweather's hit was an OBVIOUS cheap shot that caused me to immediately post on Facebook calling for his suspension. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zb1CmHk9GK0 After watching the video, I dare anyone to make the claim that Merriweather wasn't purposefully trying to knock Heap out. It is painfully obvious. However, the official reviewing the hits didn't even think this was enough of a hit to warrant the highest fine of the week, much less a suspension.
While James Harrison's hit was violent, how does it even compare to Merriweather's obvious headhunting? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aJvKt1vF4GM Massaquoi looks to me like he ducked at the last second causing Harrison to go higher than intended. Obviously, it's debatable, but the fact that it's debatable should at least bring with it a smaller fine than Merriweather received. Instead, he paid the highest amount at $75,000.
UPDATE: Apparently, the NFL thinks the hit was dirty and deserving of a fine, but that hasn't stopped them from continuing to sell photos of the hit online. Good show.
UPDATE II: After the outcry over the photos, the NFL has decided to pull them from the shelves. Gosh, they're so proactive.
Lastly, Dunta Robinson shouldn't have been fined. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jmsAdwm7LHQ&feature=related Nor should it even have been a flag. Just because Robinson (A graduate of Clarke Central High School) laid the wood on Jackson does not make it an automatic illegal hit. Slow motion replay clearly shows him leading with his shoulder and impacting the receiver in the upper chest. There is no helmet-to-helmet impact. Nonetheless, Robinson was fined $50,000 anyways. The same amount as Merriweather was fined.
This is nothing new from Roger Goodell's reign as Judge, Jury, and Executioner of the NFL. Unfortunately, inconsistent punishment has become the rule not the exception. Drive drunk and kill someone? You'll be suspended a few games. Smoke weed a couple times, though, and you might end up suspended indefinitely.