NFL fines Packers’ Collins $50,000
GREEN BAY, Wis. » The NFL fined Green Bay Packers safety Nick Collins $50,000 yesterday for his helmet-to-helmet hit on Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Roy Williams.
In a statement, league officials said Collins "violently and unnecessarily struck a defenseless receiver" in the neck and head area with his helmet during Sunday night’s game at Lambeau Field and called it a "flagrant violation of player safety rules."
NFL executive vice president of football operations Ray Anderson told Collins that further offenses "will result in an escalation of fines up to and including suspension."
The NFL is cracking down on illegal hits, and players who violate the rules are subject to increased fines or even suspensions.
Goodell: Players won’t decide fines
CINCINNATI » Sorry, Troy Polamalu. Commissioner Roger Goodell says active NFL players won’t be deciding punishment for flagrant hits that merit fines.
Goodell wants to hear their opinions, though.
The commissioner said yesterday the league has been opposed to allowing active players or team officials to get involved in deciding punishments. The league recently increased its enforcement of rules against flagrant hits.
The Steelers safety has been outspoken against the crackdown, saying it has caused paranoia around the league. Teammate James Harrison was been fined $100,000 for three hits, prompting him to talk briefly about retiring. Polamalu suggested last week that current players and team officials should be involved in deciding punishments.
Goodell indicated that’s not going to happen.
"There are league executives involved and there are former players involved," Goodell said. "I think having active players and active front office executives is something the competition committee has always frowned on."
Panthers QB Moore out for season
CHARLOTTE, N.C. » The Carolina Panthers’ miserable year took an even darker twist yesterday when tests revealed starting quarterback Matt Moore has a torn labrum in his throwing shoulder and will require season-ending surgery.
Moore was injured when Sedrick Ellis drove his right shoulder into the turf on a sack in the second quarter of New Orleans’ 34-3 rout on Sunday.
Chiefs’ Johnson signs new contract
KANSAS CITY, Mo. » Linebacker Derrick Johnson has signed a five-year contract extension with Kansas City that includes a $15 million guarantee.
Johnson’s agent, Jeff Nalley, told the Associated Press the deal was signed yesterday.
The deal is potentially worth about $34 million. The Chiefs declined comment.