It took the Steelers about one half of football to have a player pick up a fine in 2011.
Lawrence Timmons broke the Steelers' eight-quarter fineless streak when he was ordered to pay out $21,000 for cracking Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez in the head during the first quarter of the Steelers' 27-10 win over New York in Week 2.
While there have been plenty of fines the Steelers could rightly protest, this isn't one of them.
Timmons launched into Sanchez, striking the passer's head with his shoulder, knocking him woozy to the ground. Sanchez's third-down pass was incomplete, but the penalty gave them a first down, and eventually scored.
According to Joe Starkey, Timmons isn't happy about the fine.
"What can you do? I was just playing ball," Timmons said, per Starkey. "I lowered my target like you're supposed to do. I can't help it if he slides or falls. It's a tough spot to be in."
We've seen much lighter hits get fined. What's interesting is what used to be a baseline of $15,000 is now $21,000. Apparently 21 is the new 15, perhaps inflation is now involved. Or tax. Seems like there's an election coming up.