JuJu Smith-Schuster calls out NFL, believes he was unfairly suspended for taunting
(image via JuJu Smith-Schuster)
JuJu Smith-Schuster isn't over his Week 14 suspension.
Smith-Schuster was suspended for laying out and then standing over Steelers arch-nemesis Vontaze Burfict during Pittsburgh's Week 13 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals.
The Monday night matchup was one of the league's most violent games in years with nearly 240 yards in penalties.
In a video he released Monday afternoon, Smith-Schuster called out the NFL for it's inconsistency in how its Competition Committee doles out justice.
"Honestly, it's bullshit," says Smith-Schuster. "I should never have gotten suspended, honestly. I should have took the fine like everybody else but instead they gave me the same suspension as Gronk. That sucks."
New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski was suspended one game for violating the league's "unnecessary roughness" guidelines following his brutally late hit on Buffalo Bills corner Tre’Davious White.
"It was a pass play," says Smith-Schuster. "Big Ben obviously checked down on that play and for me it was like, 'OK, since [Le'Veon Bell] got the ball I'm going to make a block for him. I didn't know it was 55 until after. I looked over him and I was like, 'Damn, it's Vontaze Burfict, one of the dirtiest players in the game, and I actually got him.'
"I was just trying to make a block. I hit him. I felt like it was a great, clean hit because I hit him in the shoulder pads. You can argue that his helmet, his head *did* go back but still, I thought it was a clean hit. They suspended me. I stood over him. I do apologize for that because that's not me, but at the end of the day, I shouldn't have got a fine *and* suspended at the same time."
The NFL elected not to fine Smith-Schuster following his appeal, but the suspension stuck. Meanwhile, Bengals' George Iloka won his suspension appeal and will instead pay a $36,454.50 fine for his hit on Antonio Brown.
"I think the NFL is just trying to prove their point about something," says Smith-Schuster. "I kind of understand that but at the same time I think it's unfair that the other guy gets his appeal and it gets turned over and he can play this week. But for me, why me? I understand the fine, but to get fined and suspended? Come on, man. That's the worst."