As a proud member of Pittsburgh Steelers Nation, I was more than a little upset at the NFL during the 2010 NFL season, based on the way that they changed the rules about hitting opposing players. Probably nowhere near as upset as James Harrison was, but being fined $100,000 over the course of the season would do that to a man.
Roger Goodell and the NFL have stated that they are going to make the NFL a safer place to play, and Harrison was the poster boy for what would happen to a player if they refused to go by the new standards of the NFL.
On this play, Suh not only grabs Delhomme by the facemask, he spins him around by it, puts both arms around his head and then slams him to the ground by the head. Watching this play, it was hard to imagine that this was not going to be called a personal foul (which it was), and that Suh was not going to be fined for this hit (he was, $7,500).
Some at the time stated that a simple fine was enough, even though this fine was shortly after Suh signed his rookie contract with a guarantee of $40 million. That would be like fining someone that makes $1,000 per week a dollar.
But, people gave Suh the benefit of the doubt. He went on to receive, over the course of the 2010 NFL season, an additional four personal fouls, including one for hitting Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler that cost him $15,000.
During the Detroit Lions' preseason game against the Cincinnati Bengals last night, Ndamukong Suh welcomed Bengals rookie QB Andy Dalton with a hit that was almost identical to the one from last preseason against Delhomme.
Steelers fans everywhere, and James Harrison, I am sure, are waiting to see what exactly the NFL is going to do regarding these hits.
Harrison's hits, though brutal, where nowhere NEAR as ferocious as the hits that Suh has delivered. Not only that, Harrison's penalties were for hitting defenseless receivers, and Suh's were for hitting QBs.
And EVERYONE KNOWS how the NFL feels about the QBs.
So, now we wait, until probably Monday or Tuesday, to see exactly how serious the NFL is about suspending players for repeated illegal hits. This would make the fifth time Suh has gone over and beyond what the NFL considers legal.
No suspension to Suh will probably mean that there won't be suspensions for these type of hits. At least not in 2011.