Steelers DL: I’ll continue honoring late father, fines be damned

Steelers defensive lineman Cam Heyward was fined $5,787 last week for writing "Iron Head" on his eye black.

The move is a personal tribute to his late father, former NFL running Craig "Ironhead" Heyward, who died of cancer in 2006 at just 39 years old.

But if anyone expected the fifth-year player to stop with the tribute in the face of continued fines, guess again. On Sunday against Arizona, he doubled down and repeated the tribute — "IRON" written under his right eye, "HEAD" under his left.

Along with honoring his father, Heyward has seen his Steelers win each of the last two games, including Sunday’s 25-13 upset of the Cardinals.

But if anyone expected the NFL to continue fining Heyward for the move, according to FOX Sports officiating guru Mike Pereira, they would be correct. As you can see in the video above, Pereira says Heyward will be fined roughly double what he got last week.

Heyward told the reason for the fine is that he was not given permission by the NFL to alter the eye black with the writing. And while the appeal for his original fine is reportedly scheduled to be heard Tuesday, Heyward told ESPN after Sunday’s game the tributes won’t stop, regardless of the cost.

"That’s the goal," Heyward said of honoring his father every game. "There have been others, and I’m not going to name any names, that have worn it to support cancer. I don’t want to get involved in it, but it’s bigger than me. I’m not going to shy away from the fight against cancer, and I’m going to support them in any way possible."


The "others" Heyward references likely includes teammate DeAngelo Williams, whose request to wear pink all season was denied by the NFL last week. The request was in honor of Williams’ mother, who died of cancer in 2014.