Justice has been served.
According to a report by Adam Schefter of ESPN, the NFL has indeed fined Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict for his low hit Sunday on Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, per agent Audie Attar.
On Wednesday, Schefter reported that Burfict hadn’t been fined for his unflaggged hit below the knee on Roethlisberger. The hit in question took place with just over two minutes remaining in the first quarter. On the play, Burfict took an obvious shot at Roethlisberger’s lower leg below his knee after a pass attempt. The Steelers quarterback said Tuesday morning in an interview that Burfict claimed he was pushed on the play.
Burfict might very well have been fined multiple times for indiscretions that took place on Sunday as he was also penalized 15 yards late in the game for unnecessary roughness after driving Steelers fullback Roosevelt Nix backwards and onto the ground after a running play. That play resulted in Steelers guard David DeCastro getting into an altercation on the ground with Bengals defensive lineman Wallace Gilberry. It was reported on Thursday that DeCastro had been fined for grabbing Gilberry’s facemask during that altercation.
Burfict has already been fined four times during his career for illegal hits. According to reports, those fines totaled $77,000. Burfict’s agent said his player will appeal his latest fine. If Sunday’s hit is viewed as being roughing the passer, the fine for that for first-time offenders is $17,363.
UPDATE: Schefter now reports that Burfict was actually fined for three plays in Sunday’s game. Two unnecessary roughnesses and one hit on Roethlisberger. He was fined just under $70,000.