Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph didn’t get away without any punishment.
Rudolph was fined $50,000 for his role in a brawl that was the talk of the NFL world, according to NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport. He was one of a whopping 33 players to receive discipline for the incident.
Rudolph and Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett were involved in a fight late in a Nov. 14 game that immediately went down in sports infamy when Garrett ripped Rudolph’s helmet off and hit him in the head with it. Rapoport said other players were fined, including some who left the bench area.
Garrett was suspended less than 24 hours after the altercation. It was clear that Rudolph wouldn’t be suspended, but everyone expected him to be fined.
Mason Rudolph was upset at Myles Garrett
In the aftermath of the brawl, some analysts were outraged that Rudolph wasn’t getting enough blame.
Rudolph was brought down by Garrett after Rudolph delivered a short pass. Garrett seemingly didn’t know Rudolph had released the ball, but tempers flared at the end of a blowout loss for the Steelers. Rudolph ripped at Garrett’s helmet, and when they both got up, Garrett ripped Rudolph’s helmet off. Rudolph kept going at Garrett and then Garrett hit Rudolph in the head with the helmet.
Then the story took a different turn on Thursday. A report said Garrett claimed in his appeals hearing that Rudolph had directed a racial slur at him. Rudolph denied that and the NFL said it found no evidence that Rudolph had used a racial slur.
Even if Rudolph said nothing, he wasn’t completely innocent in the ordeal.
Browns, Steelers affected by punishments
The fallout from the brawl affected dozens of players on both teams. Garrett got the biggest penalty. He was suspended indefinitely, for at least the rest of this regular season and playoffs.
In total, 33 players — 21 on the Steelers and 12 on the Browns — received discipline, mostly for the offense of entering the fighting area. Both teams were also fined $250,000 each, leading to a sum of $732,422 in fines for the incident.
Steelers center Maurkice Pouncey was suspended for three games for punching and kicking Garrett, and that was reduced to two games. (It’s likely not a coincidence that a two-game suspension keeps Pouncey out of the Browns-Steelers rematch.) Browns defensive tackle Larry Ogunjobi had a one-game suspension for a blindside hit on Rudolph upheld, though a fine was rescinded.
It’s rare to see one fight have such a fallout. Rudolph got off pretty light compared to the other participants.
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