Rodgers-Cromartie Fined 21K For Hit On Leftwich

Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie was fined $21,000 by the league for his hit on Steelers quarterback Byron Leftwich last Thursday. According to the NFL, he “unnecessarily struck a defenseless player in the head and neck area.”

“Twenty-one thousand? I ain’t even got that,” said Rodgers-Cromartie as he came off the field, presumably joking. “I won’t hit ‘em no more, I’ll tell you that much.”

The play in question occurred at the 1:12 mark of Thursday night’s game against Pittsburgh. Leftwich escaped pressure, rolled to his right and tried to find a receiver. Rodgers-Cromartie, who was in coverage, came running towards him, left his feet and launched himself at Leftwich, leading with his right shoulder.

Rodgers-Cromartie told Birds 24/7 that he thought it was a clean hit. He was then asked if he had any regrets about the play.

“Regrets? We’re playing football, man,” Rodgers-Cromartie said. “The Bible said don’t live a life of regret.”

Chris Mortensen offered this up on Twitter shortly after the news of the fine came down.

“Rodgers-Cromartie’s fine isn’t sitting well with everyone around league. One prominent coach thought this would merit suspension.”

Peter King took a hard stance against Rodgers-Cromartie’s actions in his Monday Morning Quarterback column.

Goat of the Week: Philadelphia CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, for his irresponsible launching and shoulder/upper arm cheap shot of a defenseless Byron Leftwich, the Pittsburgh quarterback, in the preseason game at Philadelphia. Rodgers-Cromartie is in line for a significant fine — maybe six figures. I think it’s worthy of a suspension. That’s one of the most egregious hits I’ve seen in the league in the last couple of years — worse than James Harrison on Colt McCoy, because you could argue that Harrison thought McCoy was a runner when he lined him up to hit him. Rodgers-Cromartie launched himself in violation of a well-publicized rule, and then hit Leftwich in the head in violation of a well-publicized rule. Luckily, Leftwich walked away, seemingly fine. The next victim may not be so lucky.

“They couldn’t have thought (the hit commanded a six-figure fine),” said Rodgers-Cromartie. “How could you think that? He got up right from it. I say I left my feet, I can understand that, I can understand the fine coming. Six figures? Nah.”

Here’s a look at the video:

  • Mathias T-rade Torp

    I might not be completely clear on the rules, but it seems he launched himself, shoulder first, and was unable to stop himself before Leftwich threw the ball

  • TA

    He really is trying to take over for Assante – #22 made a couple of those hits last year and got fined for them. And I don’t think they were on QB’s. If he really believes that was legal you have to worry about his capacity to learn the playbook. On top of it – it was a preseason game?!?!? He’ll get suspended if he does it again.

  • RM

    It didn’t look like he hit him in the head (per Peter King) – looked like it was shoulder to shoulder contact to me? Still shouldn’t have launched himself like that – deserves a fine, but not the 6 figure type or a suspension?

  • Tyler Phillips

    Shoulder to chest. Launched so a fine is justifiable. One prominent coach was probably Tomlin. And those around the league are the steelers FO. I wonder who is slipping a couple Gs to Peter king for that garbage.

  • ICDogg

    Shoulder to chest, but caught the head afterwards. It’s an illegal hit because of the launch.