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NFL Announces Kurt Coleman Will Not Be Fined For Hit On Austin Collie

The NFL has announced that Philadelphia Eagles safety Kurt Coleman will not be fined for the collision which injured Colts WR Austin Collie. NFL Network's Jason LaCanfora explained that "Because Collie's helmet-to-helmet contact was a result of being driven toward a defender from a prior hit, there's no fine for this action."

The video clearly showed that the helmets of Coleman and Collie did collide, but it would have been impossible for Coleman to do anything about it because Collie has been knocked into him a fraction of a second earlier by Quintin Mikell. At halftime of the game, CBS analyst Bill Cowher noted that the helmet to helmet contact was unavoidable and said of Coleman "He should not be fined. Do not fine this young man. This was a clean play. Do not fine him."

The NFL agreed with Cowher in part. While they said the play was not worthy of a fine, they did however judge that the play was officiated properly.

Though there's no fine issued, the play was deemed properly officiated. Officials have been instructed to err on the side of player safetyless than a minute ago via Twitter for BlackBerry®

 

The problem here is that NFL sidestepped making a firm decision. They admitted that either Coleman or Mikell were fault and deserving of a fine, but didn't say that the flag was wrong. It would seem like an either/or situation to me. It was either an illegal helmet to helmet shot on a defenseless WR that the league has repeatedly said will be punished with a fine or it isn't. They rode both sides of the fence here and allowed for more ambiguity in the rules.