Usually, a player makes a big hit in a game, draws no flag, and then later in the week receives a FedEx from the league office advising him of his involuntary contribution to one or more charities of the NFL’s choosing.
For Steelers safety Ryan Clark, his “how many fingers? . . . Tuesday” shot on Pats receiver Wes Welker triggered a penalty. But there will be no fine.
Per the Boston Herald, NFL V.P. of officiating Mike Pereira says that Clark won’t have to pay for popping Welker.
“A lot of people think it’s a foul to leave your feet,” Pereira said. “Launching is not a foul. There is nothing in the rulebook that states that at all. It’s a misconception people have.
“It is a foul to hit with your helmet against a defenseless receiver. It is a foul to throw a forearm into the neck or head area of your opponent. I don’t think either of those things happened. I’m not a fan of those high hits but if you do it with your shoulder you’re OK.”
(Troy Polamalu says, “Holy crap.”)
Here’s the hit, which for some reason isn’t as much fun to watch now that we know it’s regarded as clean.