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Steelers safety Mike Mitchell sounds off on Roger Goodell in tirade
07 December 2017, 09:39 | Anna Jefferson
Mike Mitchell says NFL player safety rules'ain't football in nonsensical rant
The speed of the game simply doesn't allow for less hitting, Mitchell said.
The tirade came in light of news that Bengals safety George Iloka had his one-game suspension for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Steelers receiver Antonio Brown reduced to a just a fine, while another Steelers wideout, Juju Smith-Schuster, did not win a similar appeal after a crack-back block and taunt of injured Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict.
"Hand us all some flags and we'll go out there and try to grab the flags off", Mitchell said in the aftermath of Monday night's violent Steelers-Bengals clash that produced more than 200 yards in penalties and two players stretchered off the field. Danny Trevathan, Mike Evans, Aqib Talib, Michael Crabtree and Smith-Schuster have all received one-game bans this season for various head shots.
Roger Goodell signed a five-year extension Wednesday to remain commissioner of the NFL. But Umenyiora said the last people who should have a problem with the league trying to make the game safer are the actual players, because they're the ones who assume all the risk. You want the collisions, you want all those things.
"You don't think Goodell doesn't know about what is going on?"
"Just hand us all some flags", Mitchell said, per ESPN's Jeremy Fowler. "You have to know what the risk is when you sign up". That would make it easier for me, because I don't gotta wear heavy (expletive, ) but give us flags because then I know what we're playing. We gotta get better leadership as who's running the league, because obviously everybody from fans, owners, players are all disappointed in Roger Goodell.We can't have a guy where you just hand out discipline on how you see fit. The two fines totaled almost $60,000. We are always making bang-bang plays. Some players have been fined, some have been suspended, some are still in concussion protocol.
"They go to their locker rooms, they go to their meeting rooms and their players are praising them, their coaches are praising them, but their check, their wallets are being deducted thousands of dollars for doing what we learned how to do to come into this game". "And at first you're taking our money but now I've got a-holes like Matt Hasselbeck calling me a dirty player and trying my character and we've never met before". "I donate more money to Cincinnati underprivileged kids than, probably, the people on the Bengals". "Make that make sense", said Mitchell of the 2015 play. "We've just got to do better", Mitchell said. There needs to be a set guideline on how you do what you do. Audio also includes Steelers center Maurkice Pouncey. It's still very confusing whether a hit was "legal" or not and it's hard for defenders to know whether they will be flagged for hits that might cross the line.
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In that moment, I made a decision to forego any courtroom formalities and just answer the questions the way it happened. She appears on the cover and speaks inside the magazine about her experience during the "demoralizing court process".