Pictured: Roger Goodell's ideal of exemplary leadership.
So first off, yeah I know I haven't been as active this season as I was last year. I could go all Livejournal and regale everyone of how my life got flipped, turned upside down, but no one who reads this (people do read this right?) gives a shit about that, so on to football REAL TALK.
Last week was another entry in the storied Steelers-Ravens rivalry. All the pregame masturbatory hoo-ha was about how this was exactly like a heavyweight title fight, and I don't think they meant it was like two gangly 7 foot Eastern European motherfuckers engaging in a bro hug for 12 rounds. No indeed, this was all about two teams who are all about beating the shit out of each other and that is exactly what we got. That's when the bullshit began
First, Ray Lewis leveled Hines Ward, who got knocked the fuck out. No penalty was called, and Ward was out for the rest of the game with a likely concussion. Replays showed it was probably a helmet to helmet hit in the technical sense (it was more of a graze than actual contact) but not something you would think was blatant or intentional. Later on, Ryan Clark laid out Ravens TE Ed Dickson with one of those 70s style "DB crushes a receiver with a legal hit that makes you blurt out OH SHIT" kind of moves. However Dickson turtled up in a ball like he was Sonic the mothefucking Hedgehog and in the process what was going to be a clean hit to the chest into a helmet to helmet collision. A completely bullshit personal foul was called, and I'd like to think that was what Clark was trying to figure out when he was out of position for the game winning TD.
The result? A $40,000 fine for Clark and a $20,000 fine for Lewis. Why the higher fine for what was ostensibly the same transgression? Not the "wah, Goodell hates the Steelers" garbage, but what seems to be the actual reason is probably just as idiotic. It appears Clark gets the stiffer penalties because he has a rep as a repeat offender because he's known as a hard hitter which in this era of football is the same as being dirty. This is even more retarded when you consider the entire AFC North is pushed as a rough division where every team beats the shit out of the others and every game is like one of those Old West fights where someone gets punched out and slid across the entire length of the bar. So on one hand the NFL will promote the hell out of the beatings these teams put on each other, but turn around and fine them when they actually knock the shit out of each other.
Even Big Ben took a break from rehabbing his image (possibly emboldened by officially no longer having the most hated penis in Pennsylvania as of this week) to take a swipe at the NFLPA leadership for being such fucking imbeciles for agreeing to a system where King Rog is judge, jury, and appeals process: "Someone needs to stand up and do something like De Smith. He is our player guy, stand up and do something for our players."