Detroit Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh was fined $100,000 for an illegal block during his team’s season-opening win against the Minnesota Vikings.
It is another in a succession of infractions by the Pro Bowl player during his four-year National Football League career.
Merton Hanks, the NFL’s vice president of football operations, informed Suh yesterday that he was fined for violating a rule that prohibits blocks below the waist by players of either team after a change of possession, the league said in an e-mailed statement.
The play occurred during the second quarter of Detroit’s 34-24 win against the Vikings three days ago, when Suh dived at the legs of Vikings center John Sullivan following an interception by Lions linebacker DeAndre Levy. Levy’s touchdown on the play was nullified by the infraction.
Suh, the second player selected in the 2010 NFL draft, said after the game that he wasn’t going after the knees of Sullivan, who had microfracture surgery during the offseason, and that the two spoke at halftime, according to ESPN. Sullivan said he was surprised he wasn’t seriously injured on the play, ESPN reported.
Suh was fined $30,000 by the NFL in November for striking Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub in the groin with his foot during a game. The play came a year after Suh stomped on the arm of a Green Bay Packers player, for which he was suspended two games and offered a public apology. He was fined three times by the league prior to the ban and met with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to discuss how to better play within the rules.
Suh had tallied $77,500 in fines before yesterday and has made $51.7 million in his four-year NFL career, according to the Detroit Free Press.
The NFL’s largest fine against an individual was in 1999, when former San Francisco 49ers owner Edward DeBartolo was fined $1 million for his involvement in a gambling-fraud case. New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick was fined $500,000 in 2007 after his team broke NFL rules by videotaping the New York Jets’ signals during a game. The New Orleans Saints were fined the same amount in 2012 in connection for what the league determined to be a bounty program rewarding big hits.
Tennessee Titans owner Bud Adams was fined $250,000 in 2009 for making obscene hand gestures during a win over the Buffalo Bills. Former All-Pro Ray Lewis also was fined $250,000, for obstructing an investigation into a double murder following a post-Super Bowl fight outside an Atlanta night club in January 2000.