Browns rookie Peppers fined $24,000 by NFL for illegal hit
BEREA, Ohio (AP) Jabrill Peppers scanned the email from the NFL and saw the amount of his fine.
”I stopped reading the letter,” he said. ”Yeah, I shut it down.”
Cleveland’s rookie safety was fined $24,000 by the league for his illegal hit on Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Josh Malone on Sunday.
In the fourth quarter, Peppers delivered a hard blow near the sideline to Malone’s chest area, but the official ruled he made contact with the receiver’s helmet and assessed him a personal foul. Cincinnati scored a touchdown moments later to wrap up its 30-16 win.
Peppers still feels he led with his shoulder and his hit was within the rules. He’s still unclear as why Malone was considered a ”defenseless” receiver as he appeared to be running with the ball.
”I’ve got to do a better job of coming lower, not leaving anything to chance,” he said. ”I do think they should have some type of review on plays like that to make it fair `cause right now it’s where can we hit the guy to dislodge him from the ball. You hit him too hard up top and it looks too violent, they flag you.
”If you go too low, you’re a dirty player, you’re maliciously trying to injure someone. But at the end of the day, that’s why they pay us to make those decisions to figure it out.”
Earlier this week, Browns coach Hue Jackson said he felt hits such as the one Peppers made should be reviewable as they are in the college game.
Peppers believes the current rules put the defensive player at a distinct disadvantage.
”I just feel like any kind of violent collision, they just flag,” Peppers said. ”As a DB, what do you want us to do? When you go low, you’re a dirty player and the torque from the hit folds a receiver and his helmet comes down on your helmet, they still throw the flag. You can barely touch those guys when they’re running their route. Now you can barely touch them when they’re catching the ball.”
Peppers plans to appeal the fine. He knows it won’t be rescinded, but he hopes it will be lowered.
”I don’t have 24 to give like that,” he said.
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