There aren’t many situations in which losing $100,000 is considered getting off easy.
That’s the case for Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, who won’t cost his team a draft pick for his ill-timed sideline interference during a game at Baltimore last November.
Steelers.com writer Bob Labriola revealed as much Thursday afternoon, after the NFL informed the team that the matter was officially closed. The league levied a six-figure fine on Tomlin for obstructing the Ravens’ Jacoby Jones during a second-half kickoff return on Thanksgiving night.
Baltimore went on to win the game, which may have led the league to leave the punishment as strictly monetary. However, there were reports in the immediate aftermath that the NFL was preparing to dock the Steelers a draft pick for the blatant rules violation.
CBS Sports reporter Jason La Canfora tweeted a theory as to why the Steelers and Tomlin escaped a draft-day penalty.
Steelers announce NFL informs no loss of draft pick for Tomlin sideline shuffle. Had Ray Anderson remained EVP I suspect that not the case
— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) March 20, 2014
Ray Anderson left his perch as the NFL’s executive vice president of football operations in January to take the athletic director position at Arizona State University. Troy Vincent was officially named Anderson’s replacement Wednesday.
The Steelers have six picks in the 2014 NFL Draft, which takes place May 8-10. They will choose at No. 15 overall and have a selection in every round but the third.
Tomlin and several Steelers staffers were in South Bend, Ind., on Thursday for Notre Dame’s pro day activities. Fighting Irish defensive tackle Louis Nix is rumored to be a potential Pittsburgh target in the first round.