In the immediate aftermath of Steelers coach Mike Tomlin’s walkabout that resulted in one of his feet actually being in the field of play, we pointed to the precedent created three years ago by the league, when it fined the Jets $100,000 for a similar incident.
The league apparently has pointed to that precedent, too.
Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that the NFL is considering a six-figure fine for the Steelers and Tomlin. Per multiple reports, there’s also a chance that the league will strip one or more draft picks from the Steelers.
The possible loss of a draft pick should terrify the Steelers. For billion-dollar business, six-figure fines are like parking tickets. Draft picks have much more value to a team, given that each one (even seventh-rounders) can become young players who can be kept for four years at a low rate of play.
It’s unclear whether the Steelers and Tomlin would be separately fined. For Jets strength coach Sal Alosi, who arranged a wall of inactive players on the far side of the white sideline stripe during punt plays, the team was fined $100,000. (Alosi “resigned” after the season.) In the 2007 Spygate case, both the Patriots and coach Bill Belichick were fined.
Schefter reports that a suspension of Tomlin won’t happen.
A decision will come early in the week. As we reported on Thursday night, the situation falls within the jurisdiction of executive V.P. of football operations Ray Anderson.