Mike Mitchell vents to the National Football League after slew of penalties, suspensions

Mike Mitchell says NFL player safety rules'ain't football in nonsensical rant

Mike Mitchell says NFL player safety rules'ain't football in nonsensical rant

"I didn't think it was warranted", Roethlisberger told reporters. "They're out of their minds".

While some find Mitchell's point of view and brand of football draconian and risky, he gives voice to others who feel the game is under attack and that the violence on the field is a necessary part of the sport that participants have signed up for.

The Steelers and Cincinnati Bengals engaged in a nasty game Monday night with many viscous hits. "This is not damn football". "When I was six years old, watching Charles Woodson, Rod Woodson, Sean Taylor, the hitters, Jack Tatum".

Plain and simple, it comes down to respect for your opponent.

In an interview with ESPN, NFL executive vice president of football operations Troy Vincent said that changing targeting rules "is something we have to consider". I stand by that.

While we all can rally around Mitchell's sentiment it is not what the National Football League wants and it is not what many fans want. Mitchell's teammate, wideout JuJu Smith-Schuster was dinged for a game because of an illegal crackback block on Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict.

And don't forget, New England's Rob Gronkowksi was also suspended for a game for his late hit on Buffalo's Tre-Davious White on Sunday.


Mitchell said the CBA his peers voted to approve in 2011 gives Roger Goodell and the league too much unchecked power over fines and suspensions.

The league has notably taken precautions in recent years to help protect their players, however, the rules are mostly favored for those on offense. Players, he said, should be the ones championing these reforms the loudest. "So it's one of those things that I've tried to better myself with, but should have been more careful and take full responsibility for it". You think he'll forget what Smith-Schuster did to him? "There's just so much going on in the game right now".

"I understand that, from the fans' perspective". "I thought a fine, a pretty steep fine, something like that". But if you don't want to get injured, don't come out here. But give me flags to pull off so I know what we're playing. You know what you're in for. You know what's going to happen. "I don't think he targeted what he ended up hitting". It's still very confusing whether a hit was "legal" or not and it's hard for defenders to know whether they will be flagged for hits that might cross the line. Nobody signed up for that.

My take: Football, as a whole, has to come up with a solution.

Shazier's injury didn't stop Smith-Schuster from laying out Burfict with a blindside hit and then standing over him. People are dying. People are dying in very, very bad ways because of this head trauma. If you don't know me and you've never had a conversation with me, don't judge us on what you see in football, because football's my competitive side. There should be no doubt, he said. Danny Trevathan, Mike Evans, Aqib Talib, Michael Crabtree and Smith-Schuster have all received one-game bans this season for various head shots. "I feel like I've got to ask a guy, "Hey are you ready for me to hit you right" now before I hit you?" "I can hear the way they talk; their speech is starting to ... it's the strangest thing to see". Mitchell is one of the most gray-area players in the National Football League so it only makes sense he would defend the actions of the guys who cross the line.

"My comment wasn't necessarily even about Mike Mitchell".

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