Charles Woodson Got off Easy, and Other Grievances with the NFL's PCP

Brendan O'Hare@brendohareContributor ISeptember 14, 2011

CHICAGO, IL - JANUARY 23:  Charles Woodson #21 of the Green Bay Packers reacts after teammate Sam Shields #37 intercepts a pass late in the second quarter of the NFC Championship Game at Soldier Field on January 23, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Seriously, does the NFL's Personal Conduct Policy have actual guidelines? I hate to beat a mutilated horse even more, but things like Charles Woodson's fine aggravate me to no end, as it reveals a league being ruled by a King Goodell's Be Good Bible laced with absurd pretense. If that run-on sentence doesn't give you enough background to divulge the source of the bane of my very being, here it is (a purposely underwhelming sentence brought to you by Pro Football Talk).

The NFL has fined Woodson $10,000 for the punch, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports.

The "punch" being described refers to Woodson's gut-shot of New Orleans Saints tight end David Thomas. I'm not going to go into great detail about the cheap, after the play shot—it’s all there in the enclosed video—but it is kind of ridiculous that this punch doesn't warrant more of a fine than say, wearing the wrong socks.

The fact that the NFL administration claims to be all about "player safety"—even going the length of doing short-minded and unnecessary things like pushing the kickoff back five yards so players can gain even more momentum before being clotheslined—and then allow incidents that actually endanger the integrity of the sport to go on is such a perfect summation of the current state of the NFL's PCP. I've wasted countless words on it before about how it is the perfect hypocrisy and all that.

But incidents like this, where the a player actually makes the NFL look thuggish and all of Mike Florio's worst nightmares, don't get the proper reprimanding that they deserve. And that is ridiculous. Woodson cocked his arm, rolled his bulbous hands into tiny mortar bricks and punched an opposing player in a spot where there is no padding.

An argument against anymore action is that Woodson wasn't ejected; only given a 15-yard penalty. But when you realize players are fined almost 25 percent of their salary for hits that are minor aberrations that symbolize what modern football has turned into, that is when you realize Woodson deserved a lot more, or at least a fine that is somewhat consistent with the rest of the fines being spewed by the Commissioner's office.

That is, of course, the major problem with the Personal Conduct Policy. Nothing is coherent. A player can punch another, and not an eye is batted. A player can hit a quarterback a millisecond after the whistle is blown, and that player is sent to NFL purgatory.