Chris Conte fined 21K for hit that concussed Brandon LaFell

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Panthers wide receiver Brandon LaFell is unlikely to play against the Redskins this Sunday as a result of a concussion he suffered against the Bears last weekend.

Bears safety Chris Conte, who delivered the hit that led to the concussion, will be playing, but he won’t wind up netting much money for the game. The NFL has confirmed that Conte was fined $21,000 for unnecessarily hitting a defenseless player in the head and neck area.

LaFell was injured on a play when Conte hit the Panthers receiver in the head with his shoulder on a pass that wound up falling incomplete. LaFell wound up returning to the game, but suffered concussion symptoms this week and has been listed as doubtful for this week.

Conte was penalized during the game, but was still surprised to learn that he was being fined by the league. He originally thought his teammates were playing a prank on him, but soon realized that wasn’t the case and that he will try to get the fine reduced via appeal.

“I love football so I don’t mind (the fine), but I’d like to get paid,” Conte said, via Jesse Rogers of “That’s a big chunk of money that I make. I think it’s kind of unfair to fine a guy that’s on his rookie contract that much money, but hopefully they will look at it and get it reduced.”

We don’t see that happening, although we understand the desire to get paid for a day’s work.

16 responses to “Chris Conte fined 21K for hit that concussed Brandon LaFell

  1. I saw the hit and in all fairness , it wasn’t as bad as the hit that Jamal Charles got in Thursday’s night game. As a matter of fact it was more shoulder than helmet.
    These refs must protect the players but at the same token they are policing the safety position so hard that it takes away from a DB natural instinct to police his turf. Safeties are taught to make you pay when you go across and invade their ” house”, refs are taking away from that. It’s a fine line but let those guys play football, it’s physical but don’t turn the league into flag football, gosh!!!!!

  2. Conte’s right about the $21k being more of an impact on his game check than, say, Peppers’ check. Too bad pay grades for penalties weren’t included in that last CBA.

  3. He didn’t have a concussion, and then he did. Delayed Brain Damage Syndrome. Only in the NFL – thanks, Doc.

  4. Kind of lame on the NFL’s part. The hit should have been legal. I don’t really see any difference between that hit and the hit from Goldson onto Doucet in the 49ers/Cardinals game.

  5. It’s a case of the WR falling after Conte/safety commited to the tackle. How the heck can a player hold up in a split-second? They can’t, it’s physically impossible.

  6. I saw the hit too. Conte was clearly aiming for the body, but as LaFell went toward the ground, the head took the brunt of the hit.
    But more importantly, how did they let LaFell return to play in the game, only to suffer “concussion symptoms” later during the week? Aren’t they supposed to be screening this stuff on the sidelines nowadays?

  7. Sooooo, how do they list that on the injury report? “Partially Concussed”? Better get it right, or Goodell will be placing a phone call!

  8. Crap!! “Allen and Penn each received a fine of $7,875 for grabbing an opponent by the facemask and fighting.” How is that justified??? Dictator Goodell better start explaining his justifications and be fair with his punishments!

  9. As a Vikings fan I can say that not only should that not have been fined, it shouldn’t have been penalized in thr first place.

    Conte was just making a play and there was nothing he could do.

  10. He was taking cheap shots all game…he hit a few wr well after the ball was already dropped or over thrown as Cam is known for…I was waiting for smitty to put him in his place!

  11. H did make a good point though. Basically Veterans can afford to take more illegal hits and risk it more then a rookie,who needs to prove himself even more

  12. The penalty flag on that hit was by the book, but a subjective and harsh fine like this suggests he had some kind of malicious intent or repeat offenses, and I don’t think that was the case at all.

  13. I don’t really find any fault in the Refs. Unlike us, they don’t have Tivo/DVR to rewind every play and make sure everything is legit. The NFL on the other hand shouldn’t have fined Conte for a that hit.

    So who on the Panther sideline gets fined for sending a “concussed” player back on the field?

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