Steelers DL Cam Heyward avoids fine for inadvertent punch

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  • Cameron Heyward
    Cameron Heyward
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  • Justin Herbert
    Justin Herbert
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Last week, Pittsburgh Steelers defensive tackle Cam Heyward had an incident with Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert that could best be described as confusing. From the video, it certainly appeared as if Heyward threw a punch into the midsection of Herbert after tackling him. There was no flag on the play and Heyward maintained it was inadvertent.

According to NFL reporter Ian Rapoport, the league looked at the play and decided not to fine Heyward for the faux punch.

Don’t misunderstand, we are glad there was no fine and definitely believe that Heyward didn’t mean to hit him the way it looked. But it raises a different set of concerns about consistency with calls on plays like this.

Back in Week Six, Steelers linebacker T.J. Watt was flagged and fined for trying to punch the ball look on Seattle Seahawks running back Alex Collins. Watt’s intention was not to hit Collins but to get the football and there was no intent. The NFL didn’t care. What makes what Watt did any worse than what Heyward did and why were they handled differently? This is just another example of the inconsistency of NFL officiating.

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