Ray Anderson, the NFL’s executive vice president for football operations (aka Watchdog) seems to think that the Steelers are nothing but wrong when it comes to players and fans thinking that the league is targeting the team, more so James Harrison.
“I would say that’s misguided and, frankly, completely untrue,” Anderson said when asked if the Steelers are being targeted. “Every team and every player, hopefully, will have the confidence that, if they play within the rules, we won’t have this problem.”
Harrison has already paid $125,000 to the league in fines this year, including another $25,000 from this past Sunday when he hit Ryan Fitzpatrick of the Bills.
“It angers me, of course, that they’re taking absurd amounts of money from me for plays that I consider to be clean and legal hits,” Harrison said. “I’m sure if you asked 10 guys in the league, nine of them would say he’s not a dirty player. He’s a hard player. He’s just getting a bad (reputation) right now.”
Anderson reiterated the league’s decree from earlier this season that those inflicting helmet-to-helmet or flagrant hits will be subject to suspension.
“The league doesn’t care about us anyway,” Hines Ward said. “They don’t care about the safety of the game. If the league was so concerned about the safety, why are you adding two more games on? You talk about you don’t want players to drink … and all you see is beer commercials. You don’t want us to gamble, but then there are (NFL-endorsed lottery scratch-off games).”
Asked about Ward’s charge, Anderson said, “I have no comment to Hines Ward.”