Posted by Will Brinson
After Andre Johnson and Cortland Finnegan were fined $25,000 a piece for their respective roles in a fight that erupted during the Texans-Titans matchup in Week 12, many people wondered why they weren't suspended for the behavior.
Or, at the very least, fined more than that for such boorish bar-brawl behavior.
CBS Sports Charley Casserly said on The NFL Today that the fines, according to the NFL, fall right in line with the league's policy on unnecessary roughness penalties, but the league is going to review that policy in the offseason.
"I talked to Ray Anderson, NFL VP of Football Operations, and he told me the reason they were both fined the same is that they were both repeat offenders," Casserly said. "The reason the fines weren't more than that, he said is this -- the policy of the NFL is that they want to dramatically escalate fines. They warn the players first like they did with the hits on defenseless players this year.
"In the offseason, they're going review the fine schedule for all unnecessary roughness penalties."
What this means for people wondering why there wasn't a larger punishment directed towards Finnegan and Johnson is that the NFL didn't want to randomly assign a fine for fighting/unnecessary roughness simply because helmets were removed and blows were thrown. That would open up a discussion-worthy can of worms relating to exactly how fines are assigned -- if they're randomly thrown about, the speed with which people clamor to claim conspiracy on who's fined and for what amount.
More importantly, though, is the offseason review -- what Anderson's saying there to Casserly is that the NFL would probably like to have nailed both guys with a big fine for their behavior, but the schedule didn't permit it, and, again, if you break schedule once, you're just asking for questions/concerns/conspiracies on why someone got hit up for a specific amount.
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