The NFL hasn’t suspended Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict for his antics against the Patriots. But he has been disciplined for one of his two questionable maneuvers.
Our own Zac Jackson reports that Burfict has been fined $75,000 for his stomp of Patriots running back LeGarrette Blount. Burfict will appeal the punishment.
The team believes it has an angle that shows there was no stomp. Regardless, Blount reacted to something Burfict did.
The letter sent by the league to Burfict makes it clear that the fine arises only from the stomp, and not a hit to the knees of Patriots tight end Martellus Bennett. With the ball arriving as Burfict dove, the clearly dirty hit was not illegal; defenseless receivers have no specific protection against a hit to the knees. (Whether they should is a different issue.)
Burfict was suspended for the first three games of the year, after applying an illegal hit to Steelers receiver Antonio Brown.