NFL Fines Mike Tomlin $100,000 And Steelers Still Could Lose A Draft Pick

According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin has been fined $100,000 by the league for his Thursday night sideline incident during a kickoff return in the game against the Baltimore Ravens.

Schefter also states that the league will still consider a draft choice penalty versus the Steelers as well. A modification or forfeiture of draft picks will be considered after order of 2014 draft order has been determined.

The fine is right around where everyone thought it would be and rightly deserved. We shall see if the league follows through with taking away a draft pick, but I am still willing to wager that that they won’t when the dust settles.

Tomlin has released a statement on Wednesday following the ruling:

As I stated yesterday, I take full responsibility for my actions, and I apologize for causing negative attention to the Pittsburgh Steelers organization. I accept the penalty that I received. I will no longer address this issue as I am preparing for an important game this Sunday against the Miami Dolphins.

From the league press release:

Pittsburgh Steelers head coach MIKE TOMLIN has been fined $100,000 for interfering with a play in progress during last Thursday night’s game against the Baltimore Ravens. In addition, because the conduct affected a play on the field, a modification or forfeiture of draft choices will be considered after the final order of the 2014 draft has been determined.
The discipline was issued by NFL Executive Vice President of Football Operations RAY ANDERSON.
With 6:26 remaining in the third quarter, Baltimore’s JACOBY JONES returned a kickoff 73 yards to the Pittsburgh 27. During the return, Tomlin – in violation of Rule 13, Section 1, Article 4 of the NFL Rule Book – was in the restricted white border that surrounds the playing field and stepped foot onto the playing field during the play.
Tomlin’s positioning in the white border during play should have resulted in a 15-yard penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct.

  • kev4heels

    after the draft order has been determined? if this doesn’t illustrate the NFL’s brass bias against he Steelers, nothing does. i have NEVER heard of something like that. ridiculous. rooney needs to nut-up and do something about it.

  • Chad H

    Still considering a draft pick! NFL you better make the right decision on this. What kind of BS is this.

  • T R

    I dont mind the fine but to keep postponing this. It steelers have to give up a draft pick do it now and lets move past this.Why should the order matter. What if we pick top 10 we dont deserved it and they will take it. or if we win superbowl and pick last, then what.. Just dumb. Now we gotta keep hearing about this and spectulating for 5 more months.. Thats not only distracting but embarrasing for the league that they can’t make a decision now.. Just sucks.

  • steeltown

    Rooney should come out and suspend Tomlin for one game. That might send a message that the Organization doesn’t condone his actions and might also make the League decide against any further punishment.


  • Anthony Renzelli

    What do you propose Mr. Rooney do in this situation?

  • steeltown

    If the League decides to go through with this and takes or amends a draft pick, I will not only be upset with the League, but I will forever be pissed at Tomlin, it will always be in the back of my mind

  • Superdriller316

    The ref’s better start throwing flags for ANYONE on the white strip during a play or they need fined too. The reason they didn’t flag it in the first place and give the TD is that it would blow the POINT SPREAD.

  • cencalsteeler

    Fine- o.k. But, draft pick?- Ridiculous! Even though he is a representative of the organization, it was an isolated incident. The team as a whole should not be punished.

  • Superdriller316

    So, you condone double jeopardy?

  • Chad H

    I hope he is on the phone right now. Tell the commissioner to shove it up his a$$. Here we go with new BS from the league.

  • steeltown

    You mean I do not condone double jeopardy?

    Technically the full punishment and/or conviction has not been handed down, I just taking initiative and showing the League that we can handle things in house.

    It might save us from losing a draft pick

  • Lamarr56

    I have a feelin if a draft pick is taken away or changed, it will be the compensatory pick we get from Mike Wallace. They could make it a later round pick, or take it away all together.

  • Rick M

    The league will impose a draft penalty; that’s an absolute. There would be no reason to mention that if they didn’t plan to do so. Based on the fact that they weren’t specific (i.e. the Steelers will lose a pick in a certain round), their plan is to move the Steelers to 32nd in one of the rounds – which one is anyone’s guess.

    Thanks for NOT helping with the rebuild of the team Mike after a second straight sub-par season.

  • steeltown

    Exactly, the organization should not be punished for one mans actions. Fine him, suspend him, but don’t hurt the organization.

  • kev4heels

    That is a pretty high draft pick. NE lost one 1st rounder for getting caught consistently cheating over a period of years. Stealing signals…and you want to take a 3rd from us for Tomlin stepping 1 ft onto the field.
    The fact they are making this franchise “wait” until they are ready to rule “further” is troubling. When was the last time you heard this happen? I am not a conspiracy theorist but there appears to be a real bias against the Steelers with Adolf Goodell and his crew. Ridiculous…

  • Mike Carroll

    That’s right. It makes no sense to wait on the draft order to decide on the final punishment. Just plain stupid, but typical of Roger Greedell. He believes it’s better to handle matters in an unfair and inconsistent way because that keeps fans talking about his league.

  • Superdriller316

    Then the Steelers should have taken action before the league, like they did with Ta’Amu.

  • Superdriller316

    The waiting for the final draft order is total BS

  • DoctorNoah

    Yawn. It wasn’t intentional. Get over it, people, and stop bloviating about how Tomlin is letting you down. Let’s talk about what the hell our offensive line is going to look like and how we’re going to do something, given the way our secondary has been playing, to stop Wallace and the Dolphins.

    Given our record for the last decade or so, we are totally spoiled as fans, always expected excellent performances and being at the top of the league.

    Mike T – you’re a great guy, a good coach, and rightly focused on football and not all of this crapola.

  • RW

    The reason to mention it without taking action already is to scare other coaches/players from doing it. I think (and hope mightily) that the league is just blowing smoke with this one.

  • Superdriller316

    Was Cowher fined for going on the field during the Jaguar game?

  • Rick M

    I hope you’re right RW, but you’re not. The league had a week to discuss this and come to a conclusion. There were other immediate disciplinary steps that they could have taken to further discourage coaches from doing something like this. They’re moving a draft choice back. This has Goodell written all over it.

  • cencalsteeler

    Unfortunately, your theory makes sense.

  • Mike Carroll

    That would make too much sense. I believe the majority of NFL fans would agree a six figure fine and 1 game suspension would be appropriate punishment. Any talk of draft picks is completely insane!

  • Rick M

    I think it will be a lot higher than compensatory Lamarr56. It wouldn’t be meaningful if it’s a compensatory pick. I think they’ll move the Steelers back in the second or third round.

  • steeltown

    Exactly… but the League ALWAYS fines players and coaches, that’s a given for they are ALL about Money. Im talking more about other punishment in the form of suspension and now in this case draft order and so forth

  • cencalsteeler

    Rooney should step in and suspend Mike for a game or two, minus his pay. This will help protect the organization from further penalties.

  • steeltown

    The comp pick for Wallace very well may be a 3rd Rder

  • blackandgoldBullion

    The NFL league office is quite the joke. What a disgrace! Let’s rule, but leave the door open for further punishment. Maybe many will be upset, so I’ll make them happy and we can punish them further later.

    Make a bloody decision and stick to it, you doorknobs!

    Think back to the Pats. What they did could have affected many, many games over many years. If you think about it that way, they should have been fined and penalized for several years on end.

    This incident was a one off, not premeditated, just stupid mistake. And those idiots are talking about a potential loss of draft picks. Now I’m really pissed.

    A couple of years ago, they fined and suspended so many Steelers that it was like they were trying to castrate them. So if you’re a Steeler, you better not hit anyone too hard or we will call you on it, especially if it’s Tom Brady.

    This is not only unfair and idiotic, put it is also starting to smell real bad. Bastards!

  • Rick M

    True, but it already comes at or very near to the end of the round (depending on whether other teams have compensatory 3rd rounders). So I don’t think it will be that one.

  • cencalsteeler

    It’s starting to become big business in the NFL of collecting fines. Curious, does anyone know where this fine income is allocated?

  • treeher

    League makes me crazy. What video did they review? Tomlin’s action DID NOT affect a play on the field. Fine is appropriate but it is ridiculous to suggest they lose a draft pick.

  • cencalsteeler

    NFL charitable work.

  • steeltown

    The most ridiculous part is, it didn’t effect the outcome of the play or game. C.Allen had the angle and would’ve caught Jones regardless of Tomlin, he never slowed down and never broke stride, his trajectory changed a few inches at most

  • James Kling

    My wish this holiday season?

    Roger Goodell falls into a very deep pit with very sharp spikes lining the bottom.

  • chris ward

    Tomlin deserved to be fined for his actions, but the NFL should not punish the team by taking away a draft pick. Tomlin has all ready admitted that he made a mistake and took responsibility for it. Hopefully the NFL makes the right decision and just leaves it as it is with just Tomlin being penalized.

  • Josh English

    Did the Saints or Patriots lose picks after their scandal? No.

  • Callentown

    I want to make sure I have this straight. The New England Patriots cheated for years, won three Super Bowls and got caught, and they were docked a draft pick and some cash and all was brushed under the carpet.

    Now the Steelers are also going to be docked a draft pick and cash for one play in a game that the Steelers lost??


    “I feel like I’m taking crazy pills!!” Will Ferrell in Zoolander

  • dgh57

    This is ridiculous, we go from a fine then all the way down to possibly taking away draft picks! What about punishments that can be applied in between like suspension, making him coach from upstairs? If it does end up the NFL skipping over other punishments and we lose a draft pick then I’ll know for sure that Goodell and Co. has it in for the Steelers!

  • Ahmad

    Actually the Saints did lose a 1st round draft pick after Bountygate.

  • dgh57

    Patriots lost a 1st rd. draft pick for Spygate.

  • cencalsteeler

    By chance, is your real name Clark and do you have a knuckle head cousin named Eddie?

  • Super Dave

    Once again the league uses the Steelers to set a new standard.

    1) Art II should tell Goodell that if he docks or modifies our draft picks one iota that he will fire Mike Tomlin on the spot.

    2) Art II should tell Goodell he needs an answer now. Why the wait, what the hell are you waiting for? If we do not get notification of the league dropping this absurd idea of draft picks by the final game of the year, that after the final game of the year, he will fire Mike Tomlin on the spot.

    This BS PC League Administration would crap it’s collective pants.

  • Callentown

    DAVE, important to note that the official release from the NFL uses the term “Draft Picks” (plural).

    We’re hearing today that the NFL would not have included this statement unless they indeed intend to take draft picks away from the Steelers this spring.

  • ND_Steel

    Ridicule if you like, but I still believe in people of high integrity. He hasn’t done and I haven’t seen anything to indicate otherwise. If he says it wasn’t intentional, I believe him.

  • Callentown

    I doubt that Super Dave. I honestly don’t think the league office cares what a team does with its coach. Firing him would only further serve as warning to all, thus, making the NFL’s point even stronger.

  • Bradys_Dad

    Wonderful, fantastic, can we get on with it now ? Why is everyone avoiding the dual DB helmet to helmet strikes on Bell ? You got your $100,000 lb. of flesh out of Tomlin Baltimore fans. Now how about you explain and undoubtedly try to defend the cheap ass hits on Le’Veon Bell’s helmet ? From any angle it is 100% clear that both DBs led with the crowns of their helmets.There was no flag thrown on those hits either. It is what it is. We lost. Move on.

  • Luke Shabro

    This is absolutely ridiculous. Draft picks for this? Are you kidding me? How about when the Jets assistant coach was intentionally trying to trip people from the sideline and admitted it was planned by the coaching staff? That doesn’t constitute losing a draft pick but this does. There are only two recent cases of draft picks being forfeited that I can remember. The first rounder for Spygate and the two second rounders for Bountygate. Both those violations were premeditated, deliberate and had a fairly long duration. I think Mike Tomlin was aware of what he was doing, I’m not sure why he did it but you can’t tell me he was thinking before the game, “If Jacoby Jones is about to take one to the house I’m going to step onto the field so he has to slow down.” This is ludicrous.

  • Luke Shabro

    You can’t throw a flag like that on the Ravens. They’re too well loved. If it was William Gay or Troy though…

  • RMSteeler

    Taking draft pick or picks is ridiculous. I could see them switching draft positions with the Ravens if the Steelers draft position is above the Ravens. And I wouldn’t be surprised if it was for the whole draft in that scenerio. I can see them switching draft positions, if the Steelers draft at say 13 and the Ravens pick at around 30. Goodell’s madness and sense of fair may be that he lets the Ravens pick ahead of the Steelers for the entire draft, or even just for the first two rounds.

  • T R

    Hell lets get real stupid NFL, lets start fining QBs for intentional grounding, or PR gunners from running out of bounds on that white area and then coming back in and touching ball first or Coaches for taking illegal time outs, or making bad calls. I mean they all the “conduct affected a play on the field” LOL

  • steeltown

    Indeed. I cant say it enough, one mans actions should be one mans conviction. Fine and suspend him but to even be talking about draft picks is ridiculous. I believe the JETS fired that assistant after that blatantly INTENTIONAL act that occurred, ok, but after that, the League didn’t step in and take draft picks away!!!

  • joed32


  • steeltown

    That would be asinine

  • Superdriller316

    Wow. That’s a big difference than 100 grand and possible draft picks.

  • T R

    well you know inflation and all.

  • Rick M

    I’d rather have Dan Rooney step in and tell Goodell “enough with making Pittsburgh an example for the league. If you want to fine and suspend Mike Tomlin okay, but this doesn’t warrant any effect on the team’s draft picks or drafting position.”

    But Mr. Rooney doesn’t seem to carry very much weight when it comes to mitigating discipline to the Steelers. I admire him tremendously, but I wish he would make a statement to that effect.

  • T R

    yeah the NFL is like them speed and red cameras they put all over the city now.. just waiting to collect.. the hell with safety.. gimme the money..

  • James Brown

    The Jets weren’t penalized a DP for intentionally tripping Miami’s gunner a couple of years ago.Talk about overkill.

  • cencalsteeler

    Your points have validity and will probably hold up in Rooney’s defense to Goddell (yes, I purposely misspelled his name). The NFL has no leg to stand on when it comes to taking away draft picks in regards to Tomlins actions unless they intend on making an example of him. I don’t see this as an ongoing dilemma, so really there should be no example to be made. Fine him. Rooney steps in and suspends him and Tomlin should buy Jacoby some new dancing shoes and a years worth of dance lessons.

  • Gerardo Herrero Morales

    Enough of Mike Tomlin. Just a mediocre coach that has embarrased the best franchise in sports. MT should be fired, along with Haley.

  • Steelerbob

    I heard James Harrison still might be fined for this as well.

  • Rick M

    Excellent point James. Again the Steelers are being singled out for harsher punishment. Why doesn’t our ownership comment on this, specifying the previous New York incident and punishment? Why does Mr. Rooney always just accept things?

  • steeltown


  • steeltown

    I believe they fired that assistant immediately, that’s probably why… which is why I strongly believe that Rooney should suspend Tomlin

  • Rick M

    The Roethisberger suspension and the Harrison fines were enough evidence of that for me dgh57. This is just Goodell piling on.

    It’s strange. The Steelers have one of the largest fan bases in the NFL, but they are always given the short straw when it comes to disciplinary decisions. There has to be a hidden agenda within the league office.

  • Nolrog

    Why wait for the final draft order to be set before deciding on a draft pick. Either his actions warranted losing a draft pick or they did not. The final order is completely irrelevant.

  • Steeler Fanatic

    So now what? I better see flags thrown EVERY TIME a coach runs onto the field. Or when the Harbaugh boys run beyond the 35 whining. You have set a precedent, and Tomlin was wrong. But a draft pick? So, in essence, you are taking one pick away from the players… a chance for a guy to make it and earn a small signing bonus… you aren’t hurting just the team, but the players. Let me get this straight… The team loses a pick for an error in judgment, but Ohio State players get to play after throwing punches, helmets into the stands and popping off on the fans. But no punishment there? What a world we live in. Them getting tossed from that game is one thing- making them miss out on the Big 10 championship is another.

  • Foncool

    In the REAL World he would have been fired, especially after the KDKA video
    came out. The front office has been very silent on the matter.

    Image is very important to any company, especially to the NFL and the
    Steelers it is all about imaging and merchandising. Here you have the head coach
    of one of the premier franchises in the NFL who is held up a shining example of
    the league’s commitment to diversity and promotion of minorities, who is on the
    league’s competition committee.

    He does it on the highest profile regular season football day Thanksgiving
    in front of a National audience on what is probably the most exciting play in
    football (the Kick OFF return for a touchdown).

    Think when Ben or any other player or coach has done something to embarrass
    their team and the league. It is not done on a live National Broadcast.

    Now anyone else think in the Real Business World he wouldn’t have been fired?
    Many have been fired for a lot less.

    What type of disciplinary action the Steelers take themselves towards Tomlin,
    which they need to do will probably effect what the NFL does next. Be it a 1 game suspension, (which will probably not be
    enough in the NFL’s eyes to stop taking away draft picks) Suspending for the
    rest of the season will probably save the draft picks. I doubt they would fire
    him and the NFL would be really uncomfortable with that happening.

  • lsglickman

    Collective punishment is so 20th century fascism

  • steeltown

    Im all for the Rooneys suspending him, all for it

  • RW

    I don’t know. I just think the league would have already penalized the draft pick – there really is no reason to wait (it seems awfully silly to base the consequence on their final record…). I can’t see them moving a draft choice, but if you’re right then it’s truly hypocrisy at its finest – the Jets did the same thing a couple of years ago and there was no loss of a draft pick there.

  • RW

    got ’em.

  • RW

    It didn’t even affect the outcome of the game…

  • RW

    Yikes. There goes that. But you did make one point – both of those were scandals. I’m not positive that this was really a “scandal”.

  • RW

    If anything Art should take his team on strike to protest this BS.

  • Steeler Wheeler

    Problems with the NFL:

    1. Roger Goodell
    2. Extra points
    3. pass interference, too often called on D, never called on O
    4. lack of kick returns, they’re not starters anyway.
    5. Concussions and other injuries
    6. illegal pick with 4/5 receiver sets
    7. Roger Goodell
    8. Ball carrier allowed to stiff arm and nearly break neck of tackler
    9. field goal kickers too accurate on perfect turf and nice weather games
    10. Roger Goodell

  • Jon Crissinger

    So did either of the Ravens’ players that crushed Bell with those helmet to helmet blows get fined?

  • 2443scott

    man you think he video taped the ravens special teams practice and knew he run down that side line that way …..i knew nfl would throw book at steelers isnt any thing new there …but for first offence and every other team at some point also is in white or on side line just off the field is a little high of a fine plus a draft pick also give me a break and league wonders why people are straying away from nfl ….the refs were at fault here too but hey they are apart of the new nfl ……

  • Callentown

    Ya know, it sorta seems like the owners really like this guy. I really doubt they will say a word.

  • r4kolb

    Lets not forget that’s just them being able to take credit for money that never really cost them anything. They can puff up their chests and say look how caring we are, we gave 1 million to charity. Frauds.

  • r4kolb

    Rooney needs to come out and voice his displeasure with the potential loss of a pick. Guess we will see where the Rooney’s stand with respect to the league. Sad thing is if it wasn’t for his stupid rule this blowhard of a coach wouldn’t be here and we wouldn’t be having this conversation.

  • Elijah Stevenson

    Just think this is only the beginning of our punishment

  • Nolrog

    You forgot to mentoin Roger Goodell.