Brown was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct last Sunday after he finished off his 78 yard, third quarter punt return for a touchdown by running the last 20 yards backwards into the end zone. The touchdown did not stand, however, as Curtis Brown was flagged on the return for an illegal block in the block.
Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said during his Tuesday press conference this past week that he used Brown’s unsportsmanlike conduct penalty as a “learning opportunity” for not only Brown, but the entire team.
“Briefly, simply what I said is that it was not respectable,” Tomlin said Tuesday to the Pittsburgh media. “Those of us that know Antonio and watch him work on a day to day basis, if one word describes him professionally it’s respectable. How he prepares, what he’s willing to do, what kind of teammate he is, and that’s represented in his play. That’s the way we approached it.”
It appears that the league wants to make sure they use the incident as a teaching lesson as well. While I agree that what Brown did was not smart, a $10,000 fine, if indeed the report is true, is a bit harsh. We shall see if Brown ends up appealing it in an attempt to get it lowered.
It should be noted that Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall will not be suspended for an incident that he had in the same game with an official that led to his ejection. Hall will eventually be fined for his actions and will receive a warning that further misconduct could lead to a suspension.