Steelers notebook: NFL levies fines against Steelers, Ravens players
Several Baltimore players were fined for an array of violations committed during the Ravens’ 43-23 loss to the Steelers on Sunday.
The league fined linebackers Terrell Suggs and Albert McClellan $8,268 apiece for personal-foul penalties. Suggs hit running back LeGarrette Blount below the knees during a tackle. McClellan was flagged during a punt return. Also, linebacker Courtney Upshaw was fined $20,000 for a roughing penalty on quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. Upshaw was fined $16,627 earlier season for a similar penalty against Roethlisberger in Baltimore.
Ravens center Jeremy Zuttah was fined $8,268 for an altercation in which he struck Steelers defensive end Cam Heyward. Zuttah was flagged for unnecessary roughness following a Ravens touchdown.
Cornerback Lardarius Webb probably should have been fined but wasn’t for a horse-collar tackle on receiver Antonio Brown. The infraction is supposed to carry a $16,637 levy for a first offense under the NFL fine schedule.
The Steelers didn’t escape without penalty. Linebacker Vince Williams said he was fined $8,268 for taunting.
“I apologize, and it’ll never happen again,” Williams said Friday. “It’s no consolation for me that they have players who were fined, too.”
Nose tackle Steve McLendon avoided a possible fine for roughing the passer. “They haven’t fined me, but let’s not talk it up,” McLendon said jokingly.
• Strong safety Troy Polamalu will be sidelined for the first time since Dec. 2, 2012, because of an injured knee. Also, linebacker Ryan Shazier (ankle), safety Shamarko Thomas (hamstring), cornerback Ike Taylor and safety and special teamer Ross Ventrone (hamstring) have been rule out of Sunday’s game against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. Receiver Darius Heyward-Bey (hamstring) and linebacker Jason Worilds (abdomen) are probable along with defensive ends Heyward and Brett Keisel, tight end Heath Miller, safety Mike Mitchell and center Maurkice Pouncey — none injury related.
• The Jets’ banged-up secondary will be without cornerback Darrin Walls. Quarterback Michael Vick (foot), receiver Percy Harvin and Pro Bowl center Nick Mangold are among 15 players listed as probable.
• Outside linebacker Jarvis Jones had a cast taken off his right wrist and a pin taken out Tuesday. The former first-round draft pick missed two games in 2013 and hasn’t played since Week 3 at Carolina. “The wrist is getting back to moving the way it should,” said Jones, who tore a ligament and dislocated his wrist. “I don’t want to put a time table on it, but I’m hoping to get back at the end of this month or early December.”
• McLendon said the Jets’ 1-8 record detracts from one of the team’s strength — the offensive line, which boasts Pro Bowlers in left tackle D’Brickashaw Ferguson and Mangold. “Everyone talks about their running backs, but they’re forgetting it’s the offensive line that’s making the ground game work,” McLendon said. “It’s going to be a challenge for our defensive line to win every blade of grass.” The Jets have the third-best run game in the league, averaging 139.9 yards.
• Steelers kicker Shaun Suisham would prefer to keep the ball away from Harvin. Harvin, who returned a kickoff 87 yards for a score in Seattle’s Super Bowl victory earlier this year, ripped off a 65-yarder in a 24-10 loss to Kansas City last Sunday. He is averaging 29 yards per return. For comparison’s sake, the Steelers are averaging 16.9 yards. Making matters worse, the Steelers allowed Baltimore’s Jacoby Jones to return a kickoff 108 yards last week at Heinz Field. “Anytime you’ve got Percy Harvin back there, it’s going to be interesting,” safety Will Allen said. Suisham would rather kick the ball through the end zone, but he figures Harvin will take his chances no matter how deep he retrieves the ball. “(Harvin) is a talent who is always a threat to take one back,” Suisham said. “But we face that threat every week. It just depends on what kind of matchups we have.”
Ralph N. Paulk is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at [email protected].