George Iloka’s suspension overturned

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What seemed to be an emotional overreaction in suspending Bengals safety George Iloka apparently looked different after hearing officer Derrick Brooks slept on it.

The league announced that Brooks overturned Iloka’s one-game suspension, and gave him a $36,464.50 fine instead.

That’s the right call, as his action was more like the commonly fined hits we’ve seen over the course of the year, and less like premeditated acts like Rob Gronkowski‘s elbow smash.

That’s good news for the Bengals, and especially Iloka, who would have lost a $235,000 game check and a $31,250 per-game roster bonus if he had been suspended.

But it’s another hit for a league that looks foolish at times with it’s random interpretations of the rules. Until they have a consistent (and consistently applied) standard, they set themselves up for this kind of embarrassment.

55 responses to “George Iloka’s suspension overturned

  1. Just a run of the mill brain spear that cripples most players later in life. Nothing to see here folks, it happened before the whistle.

    Now how about Gronk’s pig-pile???? Grab the stakes and torches.

  2. Good. The blatant favoritism the nfl has shown the Patriots over the years has destroyed the integrity of the game.

  3. so the only reason that they kept Shuster’s hit was because of the taunting aspect ?

    So, now Taunting is a reason to be suspended ?

  4. What a disgrace.

    Iloka goes head-hunting and gets nothing. JJSS gets the same suspension as Gronk, even though Gronk’s shenanigans were ten times worse.

    Just another day in Goodellandia.

  5. How in the world can someone deduce that something is “less pre-meditated” than someone else’s hit?

    If anything, it looks like the clean playing Gronk simply snapped after another game of being mauled.

    How is that pre-meditated?

    I mean, LOL!!

    The cheating and spinning by the ones who so badly want to smear the Pats is absolutely stupefying.

    Smith-Schuster clearly lined up Burfict as did Iloka to Brown’s face. Iloka could have easily hit him in the chest, for example.

    Anyone who knows football knows this. Those aren’t accidents.

  6. Well Gronk got off light, JuJu got screwed, and they ignored Iloka. Not sure what’s worse, NFL officiating or NFL punishments.

  7. This decision is a mistake. Due to a horrible rule–“the catch rule”, there is way to much incentive to dislodge a receiver from ball in endzone, thus taking the td off the board. Had Antonio Brown not miraculously held onto that ball there would have been a penalty yet the touch down would have not counted due to an illegal play that might have resulted in the game’s outcome being reversed.

    My point here is that there is significant upside to player’s team for player to illegally separate opponent from ball. Non-suspension punishment does not solve the issue–determent must accomplish what it needs to accomplish.

  8. For a long time i was wondering why players like Gronk, Juju (and lots of others) – bothered to appeal suspensions that were so obviously gonna be upheld (or in Gronks case, should be extended to two games).

    And then this happens, a player commits a penalty for an illegal hit, but due to the context (AFC North football) he’s somehow suspended for a penalty that did not warrant a suspension in prior cases this season.

    It just is obvious that the NFL is handing out suspensions very publicly, expecting the appeals process to fix any errors in a low key fashion. – as a result there is no respect for initial discipline being handed out, and everybody just appeals anything.

    Having watched other sports where you felt a sense of shame when appeals were denied, how the sports media in the US completely disregards the insanity of Gronk attempting to appeal a suspension that he was lucky was not longer.

    Gronk and other people bothering to appeal obvious suspensions should be publicly called out for it and shamed to bits.

  9. sammievee says:
    December 6, 2017 at 12:28 pm
    This decision is a mistake. Due to a horrible rule–“the catch rule”, there is way to much incentive to dislodge a receiver from ball in endzone, thus taking the td off the board. Had Antonio Brown not miraculously held onto that ball there would have been a penalty yet the touch down would have not counted due to an illegal play that might have resulted in the game’s outcome being reversed.

    My point here is that there is significant upside to player’s team for player to illegally separate opponent from ball. Non-suspension punishment does not solve the issue–determent must accomplish what it needs to accomplish.
    —————————————————————-

    By this logic, every player who gets called for pass interference would be suspended. Ridiculous.

  10. badgersteelerfan says:
    December 6, 2017 at 12:27 pm
    Well Gronk got off light, JuJu got screwed, and they ignored Iloka. Not sure what’s worse, NFL officiating or NFL punishments.

    12 1 Rate This

    ——————-

    I remember a time when the NFL commissioner and some owners weren’t cheaters, too. It was pre 2006.

  11. While one can argue it is “an embarrassment” for the NFL, I believe the most important factor is getting the punishment correct compared to the crime. Which in this case, a fine should suffice.

  12. I didn’t see a suspendable offense on that play. JuJu’s I agree with as it was premeditated a la Gregg Williams.

  13. The only consistency in this is the inconsistency. Th3 NFL needs to produce straightforward guidelines:
    -After play activities like Gronk or Crabtree / Talib= 2 to 3 games
    -Hits like Schuster- fine to 1 game max

    Giving both Schuster-Smith and Gronk one game equates their actions which is ridiculous.

  14. JuJu was suspended for the combination of the cheapshot and taunt after the hit which showed malice/intent. Just as egregious as Gronk. 1 game is reasonable for both players.

  15. Iloka’s punishment is pretty consistent without much of a history, except a shoulder to shoulder hit on Wheaton in the playoff game after Wheaton took 3 steps but wasn’t a runner.

    Thought they should have dropped Shuster to a fine as well, but he may be paying for all of the past cover ups of Steelers head-shots and subsequent nominal (if any) fines – Harrison, Mitchell, Shazier, et. al.

  16. More bewildering inconsistencies by the NFL.
    Iloka launches himself, both feet off the ground,
    hitting Antonio in the head, and he only gets
    a fine? Really?

    What happened to defenseless receiver, and launching?
    Nothing about retaliation? Sure Gantt, it was the
    ‘right call’ in your warped opinion.

    The guy launched and speared one of the top WRs
    in the head, in an already nasty, violent game.

    Meanwhile, JuJu jacks up the villain Burfict with
    a clean block, (yes he taunts him), and he gets suspended?
    Burfict ran two steps laterally, directly towards Schuster
    before there was contact. No launching, just shoulder to
    chest – with secondary helmet contact.

    Laughable, that he gets the same punishment as Gronk.

    This entire NFL discipline structure is flawed,
    fraught with inconsistencies, and unsatisfactory.

  17. God Bless America says:

    December 6, 2017 at 12:20 pm

    Good. The blatant favoritism the nfl has shown the Patriots over the years has destroyed the integrity of the game.

    =======================

    Not only doesn’t this make sense and is without any supporting facts, but, wrong thread, chief.

  18. amused10 says:
    December 6, 2017 at 12:47 pm
    WOW….I don’t understand how they think this right….Ju-Ju”s hit wasn’t premeditated either. Gronk’s was. Horrible!!! Such BS!!!

    0 2 Rate This

    —————–

    Do you know what the word, “pre-meditated” means? Gronk clearly was not thinking when he snapped.

  19. Unbelievable…upholding JuJu’s over-hyped & unjustified suspension while ignoring Iloka’s attempt to hurt Antonio Brown? The Patriots’ influence in the decision making process is showing through…

  20. badgersteelerfan says:

    December 6, 2017 at 12:27 pm

    Well Gronk got off light, JuJu got screwed, and they ignored Iloka. Not sure what’s worse, NFL officiating or NFL punishments.

    ===========

    Gronk got hammered actually, it is not disputable. I do think he deserved it though, it was really stupid. AJ Green’s antics were waaaaay worse and yet he only got a fine. NFL discipline protocol can’t get out of its own way.

  21. N. Suh has paid 250K+ in fines for 8 “player safety” violations in his career, including stomping on several players legs, head, etc. And yet he has served exactly 1 game of suspension time. Care to explain the rationale behind that, Park Avenue?

  22. AJ Green will always be the example used to counter any suspension. He got NONE for cholkholding a player from behind, slamming him to the ground, and punching him in the helmet repeatedly. AFTER THE PLAY!!

    The NFL has no idea what they are doing. If someone told me they spin a big wheel like the Price is Right and whatever it lands on is the decision they defiantly go with, it would not surprise me.

  23. Juju’s hit was not worse than Iloka’s. Juju delivered a very hard block towards Burfict’s upper body and ended up hitting too high, getting him on the chin. OK, based on the rules a penalty is deserved.

    Iloka aimed and launched DIRECTLY at AB’s head, not even attempting to hit any other part of his body or make a play on the ball, as everyone continues to comment. While watching the game I viewed this as clear retaliation for what Juju had just done. Iloka’s penalty was obviously deserved as well.

    But how is Iloka’s hit somehow less egregious to not warrant equal punishment? The only difference I see is the taunting, which I found particularly awful… but since when is taunting a penalty worthy of suspension?

  24. Isn’t this where all of the troll’s Pee and Moan about how the Steelers get special treatment? LOL The NFL continues to pass on punishment with the accuracy of a Plinko chip. They also have grey rules that allow ref’s to turn the direction of the game which implies the fix is on. This is why ratings will drop,not the issue of a few players kneeling.

  25. Can we go back 4 weeks and take another look at Normans horse collar take down of Jimmy Graham going out of bounds….where Norman yanked him backwards and continued the collar all the way til Graham crumpled awkwardly backwardsbeing slammed to the ground and stayed down while Norman karate chopped him close to the groin then stood over him taunting. Why wasn’t that a 1 game suspension?

  26. What a joke….George “the headhunter” Iloka has went for the head multiple times and this is what he gets?? I can see JuJu getting the game for the questionable hit + the taunting but come on…this guys aims to put players out of the game, especially steeler players…but what can you say other than its the Bengals.

  27. Oh wow, the NFL actually doesn’t care about player safety…how do you hold up a suspension on a player who delivered a LEGAL block, yet take away the suspension of a player who literally LEFT HIS FEET TO MAKE THE HIT TO THE HEAD?!

  28. Oh the fun. So I will give you a bias fan perspective so lets compare.
    Ju-Ju_bean showed his intent on the hit by his subsequent actions.
    Brown had not completed the catch (only one foot was down) so if he drops the ball after being jacked up by Iloka, the results of the play would change. I love how this is being called head hunting when both hits were to the head.
    Green was ejected in the first half so often that serves as the suspension.

    But when we get to calling a team the dirtiest, should I take nothing from all the rule changes enacted on specific hits done by Steelers on a Bengal player as shown in the ESPN graphic during the game. With the history between these 2 teams, it’s only been in the past few years where finally the bully is being hit back in the mouth. Burfict may be stupid and should be called out for some of his actions but list continues to grow for Steeler players taking cheap shots.

  29. If you remember, the Ravens Steelers rivalry used to be like this until the ravens won their second Superbowl.

    Porter tried to fight Ray in the parking lot.

    Jarred Johnson tried to decapitate Hines.

    I thought Ryan Clark killed Mcgahee on one defenseless hit.

    James Trapp Stepped on Plaxico’s chest with his cleats.

    Mcallister drop kicked Hines in the back

    If the Bengals win a couple championships the hatred will fade, on both sides.

  30. That’s at least his third fine for a head shot (on Finley in 2013), Miller in 2015 and Brown in 2017. Must be nice to have such an ‘in’ with the league that he never gets suspended.

  31. The NFL has no criteria for punishment. The only criteria is how upset the media gets over a hit. Gruden got JuJu suspended with his overly dramatic, borderline hysterical, reaction to a normal football hit.

    This is another layer of nonsense by factoring in the taunting. That has nothing to do with the hit and proves the NFL only cares about optics.

    Media made a big deal of Crabtree and Talib so they’re sus-ended. Media didn’t care a out AJ Green so no suspension for him choking a guy from behind then throwing punches.

    Part of this Iloka reduction is to give cover for the light Gronk penalty. People were criticizing them for penalizing JuJu, Iloka and Gronk the same. Now they will say JuJu was only the same as Gronk because of the taunting and Iloka got less so Gronk’s punishment seems more justified now.

  32. Juju was wrong for taunting and it was a “young” thing to do as evidenced by his body language after Juju did it and the fact that Villanueva pushed him from standing over Burfict. There is no perfect way to suspend these players!!!!! STOP THINKING THERE IS NFL FANS. Just look at these posters and comments. Half of you can’t agree on the definition of pre meditated. Btw if you don’t know who George Iiolka is you probably don’t know as much about football as you think…he is a physical punishing safety…no different than a cam chancellor.

  33. The league says JuJu’s taunting wasn’t even an issue in his suspension. So it appears now that helmet to helmet hits in the head or chin on defenseless receivers are not considered as serious as high blocks, otherwise Ilokas suspension would’ve been upheld like Schuster’s was. And Gronk gets the same suspension as JuJu for mauling a player long after the play had ended. Great consistency on the league’s part.

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