Bengals safety George Iloka's suspension overturned, team says

Ben Roethlisberger

If he's permitted to play in Week 14, Smith-Schuster will run $6,600 in a matchup with the Baltimore Ravens. Foster said according to Ray Fittipaldo of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

In a letter to Smith-Schuster, NFL Vice President of Football Operations Jon Runyan wrote: "You are suspended for the unsafe and unsportsmanlike acts you committed during the fourth quarter of last night's game". He said part of Iloka's defense during the appeal was that the National Football League has not been uniform in how it administers discipline this year.

With 7:10 remaining in Pittsburgh's eventual 23-20 win, Smith-Schuster leveled Burfict as the linebacker pursued Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell on a 12-yard gain, then stood over Burfict as he lay motionless.

Roethlisberger felt Smith-Schuster deserved a fine. Iloka's was heard by Derrick Brooks.

Smith-Schuster, who is not permitted inside the Steelers facility until he serves his suspension, will miss a game check worth $25,744.

Had Iloka been suspended, he would have been out more than $266,000 in salary and roster bonus. All three plays were similar in nature - crushing hits to the head or neck area that could have (or did) result in serious injury - but different in circumstance, intent and execution. Still it's Runyan who is drawing Foster's ire.

Foster also disputed that Runyan is an independent arbiter and said commissioner Roger Goodell remains the league's disciplinary force. We all put our lives on the line when we come out here every week, and you don't want anything like that to happen to a player, no matter what team you play for or how big the rivalry is.

Asked if that comment was related to Burfict, Brown said, "I ain't talking about nobody".

"I was just playing to the whistle", Smith-Schuster said.

Foster offered an opinion on why Gronkowski didn't receive a stiffer penalty. "Because the Steelers play the Patriots the next week".

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