League may fine teams that incur multiple player safety fines


The NFL owners continue to focus on player safety at their spring meeting in Indianapolis.

Hours after approving rule adjustments designed to protect defenseless players, word is leaking out that the league is working on a plan to fine teams for multiple player safety fines.

The idea, per Judy Battista of the New York Times, is to encourage coaching staffs to coach proper technique.   Greg A. Bedard of the Boston Globe says that three or four teams would have faced significant fines in 2010 if the rule was in place.

Essentially, teams that had multiple fines for helmet-to-helmet hits will face a pre-determined fine.  Bedard writes that Commissioner Roger Goodell hopes to nail down the particulars and start enforcing the team fines in 2011.

Of course, the NFL may embark on the ultimate player safety initiative in 2011 by not playing football.

20 responses to “League may fine teams that incur multiple player safety fines

  1. why not start fining players for tackling the other player……..GOOD GOD! KNOCK IT OFF!!!!!

  2. A lot of people posting on these boards want to complain about James Harrison, but the man won NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 2009 and was a runner up again this year. Troy Polamalu was Defensive Player of the Year this year. So are we supposed to believe Dick LeBeau–Dick LeBeau?–and his staff aren’t coaching proper technique???

    The league had better be able to sit down, roll film in slo-mo, and point out exactly how a player has failed to follow proper technique. Some of the hits they fined did follow correct form. And some they failed to fine didn’t. Unless something is done to implement booth review on every play, the bigger failure will continue to lie with the inconsistency of the officials and those reviewing them, not the coaches or players.

  3. Well it would be well and good if there was a fairness about it all…and there obviously is not, we’ve all seen it.. Heath Miller was almost decapitated however the fine opposed on McClain was decreased later in the season….why????????

  4. I teach my 9 year old peewee league team members to:
    1. Do not leave your feet when attempting a tackle and maintain proper body control to make an effective tackle.. Too easy for the runner to “fake” you out.

    2. NEVER lead with your head. Lead with a shoulder and always wrap up with your arms and drive with your feet to bring the runner down.
    3. Always tackle the runner as low as possible. Impossible to run with your ankles tied together.

    Seems some of the pros have forgotten some of the things that they were taught in peewee league.

  5. Why is it always Steeler fans turning a non-team bias article into an article about the Steelers? Get over yourselves.

  6. Steelers fans are blue collar workers that want 80’s WWF wrestling to come back on Tuesday nights, like I do.

  7. DCryan83

    Yea im sailing the same direction you are, obviously they take offense to rules that will cripple their ball club.


    Dont worry, I don’t see another Steeler winning the award in the future so it should be alright.

    Do all of you realize that if the player involved in those hits would have wrapped up and drove through none of this would even be a big deal. It’s the “malicious” nature of the hits, not the hit’s themselves. A proper form tackle can land just as solid as a blow as stepping into a player, however just looks alot less dirty.

    And to the peewee football coach… Dude, its eyes on the belly button, and dont go low. I feel bad for your players. Head ball side, Punch the arms through, Sky the eyes, and drive through. You might want to put that in your coaching manual.

  8. It’s getting to the point where it’s not about who can play football better but who can abide by the rules the best. The more rules the less it becomes about skill and the game becomes about who’s not ticking the refs off. I understand player safety by I can’t stand seeing flags fly all over the field and those flags sending one team home the winner and the other team the loser.

  9. @dcryan82 …

    Why is it that nonSteelers fans are okay with lousy officiating? Get over yourselves. Everyone wants to squawk about the lousy officiating in SBXL. Well, it’s been five years–why hasn’t the league addressed that issue? The NCAA has implemented booth review on every play. It keeps games moving, ensures someone who knows the rules checks out the plays, removes the bias of a ref having to overrule himself, and stops the nonsense of a coach having to wait to see a replay on the Jumbotron before throwing a flag.

    The commissioner keeps harping on “integrity of the game.” Okay … where is the integrity in willingly allowing a bad call to stand because a coach is out of challenges? What good does it do to fine a player for a bad hit after the game is over when the 15-yard penalty administered during the game might have changed the final score?

    We talk about plays involving Steelers because, as Steelers fans, those are the plays we remember. But I thought Harrison’s hit on Massaquoi was a bad it. If you’re a Browns fan, wouldn’t you rather see Harrison penalized for that hit than fined when it’s too late to impact the game? If you’re the Vikes, wouldn’t you rather see the NFL own up to a bad call while the Green Bay game is still in progress? Come on … quit whining about the Steelers and think about how this could positively or negatively impact your team.

  10. @rabidbillsfan …

    I expect Steelers to use proper form, which means not launching, not spearing, and wrapping up opponents. If you were with me during a game, you’d hear me yelling loudest when our players screw up because I expect more from them.

    James won DMVP for the ’08 season, not ’09 as I posted earlier. And my point is that if he was not using proper form then, he should not have won the award. If he was using proper form, it’s unlikely his form has changed. I’m complaining about the league’s lack of consistency in determining what is and isn’t legal, nothing more.

  11. Goodell also mentioned that the league will send reps to every stadium to hand out flag belts in the tunnel before every game.

    The game is dangerous, stop pretending like you care and let these guys play NFL football! That is why they make the big bucks.

    Nothing will scare fans away faster (yes including the lockout) than flag belts!

    I was watching a NFL reply the other day and saw a roughing the passer call on a super clean hit…it is getting a little ridiculous! Might as well give the QBs flag belts…

  12. They should fine teams for letting poor tackling form and improper techniques (which are taught to kids from the first day they start football).

    Injuries will fall dramatically when the game is played the way it should be played and not guys head hunting.

  13. My problem with all this is that it is going to favor the offense too much – so it would be wise to do some things to counteract that effect, like adding a loss of down to the 15-yard penalty for an illegal chop block, and to the 10-yard penalty for offensive pass interference.

    Not only that, but competitive balance enters the picture here as well: The higher-scoring the games are overall, the more blowouts there will be – and that cannot possibly be a good thing.

  14. And why isn’t there anything about the OFFENSIVE player INITIATING the hits? How many times has a defensive player commit to a tackle/hit and then the offensive player moves his head and THAT is what creates the helmet to helmet contact? And what about them (offensive players) leading with the head when they are about to get tackled? What, that is okay to try and injure a defensive player, but it’s not okay the other way around? All about player safety my a$$…..

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