Steelers safety Mike Mitchell watched how the NFL has responded to three different plays in this past week of football, and he's not happy about the different punishments that the league has handed down in response or the arcane reasoning behind those punishments.
The tirade came in light of news that Bengals safety George Iloka had his one-game suspension for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Steelers receiver Antonio Brown reduced to a just a fine, while another Steelers wideout, Juju Smith-Schuster, did not win a similar appeal after a crack-back block and taunt of injured Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict.
The safety was perplexed that Smith-Schuster and Iloka, whose hits came during play, were disciplined in the same way as Gronkowski, whose actions came after the whistle.
"This is football". Mitchell then goes on to discuss the reality of the NFL being a physical league and most dirty plays resulting from quarterback or wide receiver error, including a specific example of his hit on Tyler Eifert two years ago.
Mitchell, a former second-round pick now in his ninth season, also expressed a common theme among defenders, which is the game is almost impossible for them with the current rules in place. Foster said. "That's who I see it". "Think about what you ask us to do".
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"I'm gonna mess around and get hurt trying to protect an offensive player because he's running an over route", Mitchell said, per Deadspin. "But from the players' standpoint, I just don't understand what they're doing, what they're talking about, because the evidence is there", he added.
"That's what we would always say, the players on that Steelers team who voted "no" were players who could talk about the CBA without being hypocritical", Batch said. "Hand us all some flags and we'll go out there and try to grab the flags off", Mitchell said, via ESPN's Jeremy Fowler. "You have to know what the risk is when you sign up". No one wants to be paralyzed. If a ball is in the air and the man jumps and a man ducks his head, how do you want me to readjust my body? These are all things that are negative. Let's not try to turn football into a unsafe, barbaric game.
"This is how I changed my family legacy". Before I was drafted, I had $368 in my bank account.
Mitchell continued: "This is a combat, contact sport". Many have ripped the NFL for giving Smith-Schuster the same penalty it gave Gronkowski, whose hit was among the most indefensible the league has ever seen. And at first you're taking our money but now I've got [expletives] like Matt Hasselbeck calling me a dirty player and trying my character and we've never met before. This is a man's game. "It's for grown men".