The NFL has fined Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier $24,309 for an illegal hit on Cleveland Browns quarterback DeShone Kizer, the veteran defender told ESPN on Friday.
During the second quarter of Sunday’s game between the two AFC North rivals, Kizer took himself out of the play when he slid on a three-yard run, only to sustain a crushing blow from a charging Shazier. The Steelers linebacker was promptly flagged for a 15-yard unnecessary roughness penalty on the play.
Very dirty hit by Ryan Shazier here on DeShone Kizer. Fine coming. pic.twitter.com/7MlwuLr1Dl
— NFL Update (@MySportsUpdate) September 10, 2017
As you can see, a worried Browns offensive line came to the aid of the rookie quarterback.
“He just bounced back up when I’m there with my hands over my head thinking he died,” guard Kevin Zeitler told Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com. “He bounced right back up and kept leading us.”
Shazier was one of four players — joining William Gay, T.J. Watt and J.J. Wilcox — to be slapped with an unnecessary roughness penalty during the game. Overall, the Steelers were flagged 13 times for a grand total of 144 yards on the afternoon. It will affect the wallets of some, but it didn’t play a factor in the boxscore. The Steelers took care of the Browns, 21-18, to open up the 2017-18 regular season.
The Browns play their road opener and second consecutive divisional game on Sunday when they travel to take on the Baltimore Ravens, who blanked the Bengals, 20-0, in Week 1. As for the Steelers, they play their home opener against the Minnesota Vikings, who handled the New Orleans Saints on Monday Night Football.