For the second week in a row, Broncos defensive back Darian Stewart has been fined for a hit on an opposing quarterback.
Stewart was fined this week for a hit on Colts quarterback Andrew Luck, Troy Renck of ABC 7 in Denver reports. Last week Stewart was fined for a hit on Panthers quarterback Cam Newton. Stewart has said he is appealing both fines, although it’s hard to imagine he’ll win either appeal, as he clearly hit both quarterbacks in the helmet illegally.
This time Stewart was fined only $9,115 for his hit on Luck, in which Stewart drove his forearm into Luck’s helmet as Luck was sliding. That’s half as much as the $18,231 Stewart was fined for his hit on Newton. The NFL views roughing the passer as a greater offense than unnecessary roughness, which is why Stewart was fined more for the hit on Newton than for the hit on Luck.
Eventually, the NFL may need to do more than just fine Stewart. Two hits on quarterbacks’ heads in two games is too much. If Stewart doesn’t stop, the NFL may need to suspend him.