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NFL fines Mike Tomlin $100,000 for interfering with Jacoby Jones on kick return

Forfeiture of draft picks still in consideration.

Mike Tomlin was fined $100,000 for stepping in Jacoby Jones' path in last Thursday's game.
Mike Tomlin was fined $100,000 for stepping in Jacoby Jones' path in last Thursday's game.
Karl Walter

As expected, the NFL has levied a substantial fine against Steelers coach Mike Tomlin for getting in Jacoby Jones' way during a kick return in last Thursday's game against the Ravens.

The NFL announced that Tomlin has been fined $100,000 for stepping a foot onto the field of play and obstructing Jones' return. Jones appeared to be running down the sideline before slightly veering to his right. He was then caught from behind by Cortez Allen.

In addition to the fine, the NFL will still consider forcing the Steelers to forfeit potential draft picks once the final draft order for the 2014 season is set.

This ruling was issued by NFL Executive Vice President of Football Operations Ray Anderson.

The play has been talked about extensively over the past week. Tomlin himself went on the defensive a day ago, telling the Pittsburgh media he made a blunder but that it wasn't intentional. Maybe it wasn't intentional. The only person who truly knows is Tomlin.

But when you look at the tape, it's hard to take Tomlin's word at face value. It does appear this could have been a heat-in-the-moment issue, with Tomlin trying to save face afterward.

The punishment fits the crime, especially considering Tomlin is on the NFL competition committee. He knew the rule, and whether he intended to get in Jones' way or not, he shouldn't have been past that white line on the sideline.

Ravens fans will likely applaud the NFL's ruling. Steelers fans may think it's excessive.

Now that the play is almost behind everyone (we'll now have to wait on the draft pick issue), we can all agree on one thing: The Ravens-Steelers rivalry will enjoy even more hype the next time these two teams meet.