League changed mind on Battle hit


The league’s first reaction to one of Sunday’s big hits was that the contact didn’t merit a fine.  The league has since changed its mind.

Titans tailback Jackie Battle rammed Texans safety Danieal Manning with the crown of Battle’s helmet.  The elements were there to constitute a violation of the new rule prohibiting the use of the crown of the helmet, but the league’s initial conclusion was that the contact didn’t occur clearly outside the tackle box.

On Monday, the league changed its mind.

That’s why Battle was fined $21,000.  On appeal, however, Battle should argue that, if the league initially thought he wasn’t clearly outside the tackle box, then there’s no way he was clearly outside the tackle box.

A separate issue arises from the use of rules that the league office can’t instantly determine were, or weren’t, violated.

“I think it’s a problem for the officials when it takes the office a couple if days to decide if its a foul,” NBC’s Tony Dungy told PFT via email. “We need to make their jobs easier.”

When it comes to applying the crown of the helmet rule, the Battle fine makes their jobs harder.  “Clearly outside” the tackle box doesn’t mean “clearly.”


10 responses to “League changed mind on Battle hit

  1. He may have been between the tackles but he was well beyond the line of scrimmage. He was getting tackled by a safety….

    The between the tackles part of that rule is to allow RBs to lower their head when crossing the LOS or the defensive line.

    He was well past that and made an obvious move to hit manning with his helmet. To me it was a textbook example of what they are trying to prevent.

  2. it was against the Texans….everything is a violation against the saintly Texans….they whine and cry about everything..Stewart pulled my hair, INcognito was mean to me pollard hit dumb Johnson, the center blocked Watt…..cry me a river ITS FOOTBALL!!!!!!!!!

  3. all the people who complain. yes. we get it. we all get it. we all miss the greatest hit video’s, and when the NFL wasn’t PC. but you know what? we are lucky to even still have the NFL. with the focus on concussions and such, we live in a world now where they will eventually ban football because of this. likely in high schools as well.

    matter of time, just be happy the NFL is trying to do things to push back when that becomes an issue. it becomes an issue when someone dies on the field

  4. No Texans fans are calling for a fine you jack-waggon. I was at the game on Sunday and let me tell u that was an awesome hit. You could here the collision over a rambunctious crowd. I loved it. That being said, according to the new rule that type of hit is now illegal.. I’m not saying I agree with it. My point is why even implement a rule if the officials can’t properly enforce it.
    I see Titans fan is still sore about snatching defeat from the jaws of victory

  5. If the league isn’t sure how the hell is the player supposed to know in the heat of the moment. Either make it illegal anywhere on the field or make it legal.

  6. It’s an absurd rule if the difference between penalty, or no penalty, is merely a matter of yards, even if the player situation is exactly the same.

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