Pittsburgh Steelers rookie defensive tackle Javon Hargrave showed solid effort in Sunday’s win over the Cincinnati Bengals when he chased running back Jeremy Hill way down the field on a screen play and subsequently tackled him. That effort and tackle, however, has resulted in Hargrave being docked some of his Week 2 check.
According to Ray Fittipaldo of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Hargrave has been fined $18,231 by the NFL for his horse collar tackle of Hill in Sunday’s game.
If I have my math right, Hargrave's first game check was $26,470. So he basically gave back 70 percent of his first week salary.
— Ray Fittipaldo (@rayfitt1) September 23, 2016
Being as Hargrave is only scheduled to earn a base salary of $450,000 during his rookie season, his fine amount is likely to be reduced per an appeal.
Here’s the rule, from Article 46 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement:
“On appeal, a player may assert, among other defenses, that any fine should be reduced because it is excessive when compared to the player’s expected earnings for the season in question. However, a fine may be reduced on this basis only if it exceeds 25 percent of one week of a player’s salary for a first offense, and 50 percent of one week of a player’s salary for a second offense. A player may also argue on appeal that the circumstances do not warrant his receiving a fine above the amount stated in the schedule of fines.”
Being as Hargrave’s Week 2 paycheck is roughly $26,470, you can see that his $18,231 fine is more than 25% of his earnings. Because of that, Hargrave’s Week 2 fine will likely be reduced to around $6617 after he appeals it.
While Hargrave’s tackle of Hill certainly wasn’t textbook, you have to know that his effort to chase the running back down on the play certainly made defensive line coach John Mitchell very happy.
Hargrave was drafted by the Steelers this year in the third-round out of South Carolina State and has played in both of the team’s first two games in a limited capacity.