TAMPA — He hasn’t even received an NFL paycheck yet, and already rookie linebacker Mason Foster has been slapped with a fine. The league has notified Foster and let him know he owes $20,000 for his helmet hit on Chad Ochocinco in last weeks game against the Patriots.
“It’s a lot,” Foster said.of his first (of what very well could be many) NFL fines. “But it’s all good. I’ll pay it and keep on going. It won’t change the way I play. I’m going to keep playing football the way I know how to play football.”
Foster appeared to have hit Ochocinco’s helmet with his elbow which the NFL deems as a big time no-no. Anytime a player’s helmet is involved with a play, expect a penalty, a fine or in most cases both. The play broke up what would have been a big time passing play for the Patriots, not that one was needed in their 31-14 mauling of the Bucs.
But still, the hit occurred against a big time team, which no doubt raised the stakes of the fallout. The fact it was a big time player as well didn’t help Foster’s cause. Ochocinco didn’t seem to mind the hit saying that he felt it’s the way the game should be played. The always entertaining and outrageous wideout went as far as to offer to pay the fine for Foster.
“@Mason_Foster great hit last night, if ur fined I’ll reimburse you boss. That’s the way the game should b played. Stay healthy n have a good yr.”
– @ochocinco (Chad Ochocinco)
The NFL nipped that idea quickly.
The hit (or non-hit) has raised more concerns about Roger Goodell’s tenure as NFL Commissioner rather than about Mason Foster. Many are running low on patience with the commissioner who has single handedly changed the face of a game he’s been in charge of for little over two years.
But that’s the way the Bucs want it. Foster, much like the rest of this current defense, is a force that is being largely ignored. Foster in particular, won’t let the fine effect his playing style which is proving to one of a violent and rabid nature. The defense will continued to get ignored until it is forced to be recognized. Unfortunately for other NFL teams, recognition won’t come in the form of a $20,000 check from Mr. Foster.
No, he’s got something a little more interesting (and painful) in mind.