The NFL is making yet another controversial ruling on a player’s violation.
In a season marred by bad rulings, the league finally had to face a repeat offender. The culprit, Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, was back in hot water after stepping on hampered Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers twice in Sunday’s pivotal tilt. As a result, the league suspended him for the Lions’ upcoming Wild Card playoff game against the Dallas Cowboys.
But, just a day later, the league backtracked. Suh appealed his suspension, and attended the appeal hearing in New York City. Standing before appeals officer Ted Cottrell, Suh gave his case, and had his suspension reduced to a $70,000 fine. As a result, he was able to immediately practice with his team and prepare for Sunday’s game.
Infamously labeled as the league’s top outlaw, Suh has been penalized eight times for kicking or stomping on players. Since entering the league in 2010, he has amassed 38 penalties and has been fined for over $200,000.
However, a recent shift to the NFL’s conduct policy helped clear Suh’s name. The new rule dictates that any player who has not committed a major violation over a 32-game period will be viewed as a first-time offender. Since Suh had not committed such a violation since getting fined $100,000 after an illegal chop block back in Week 1 of the 2013 season, he was viewed as a first time offender. As stupid as that may sound, it is reality. And now, the Cowboys’ chances for advancing to the next round just got murkier.