Redskins, Lions fined total of $154,000


ASHBURN, Va. -- Washington Redskins guard Tre' Johnson was fined $50,000 Tuesday and suspended for the first game of next season for fighting and hitting an official in Saturday's game.

Twenty-three players -- 15 Redskins and eight Detroit Lions -- were fined a total of $154,000 for the melee in Washington's 27-13 victory in the first round of the playoffs.


Johnson's fine comes in two parts: $30,000 for striking back judge Bill Leavy on the head, knocking off his cap in the process; and $20,000 for what the NFL called his extensive involvement in the fight.

"After deliberately engaging in conduct that directly violated the playing rules by fighting," commissioner Paul Tagliabue wrote in a letter to Johnson, "you then attempted to resume fighting after order had been restored. As a result, you struck a game official in what can only be described as knowing and deliberate conduct in complete disregard for both the rules of play and the safety of the game officials on the field."

The fines set an NFL record, surpassing the $145,500 in fines to 35 Pittsburgh and Houston players for a fight at Three Rivers Stadium in 1996.

Saturday's fight started when the Lions' Stephen Boyd intercepted a Brad Johnson pass. During Boyd's return, defensive end Robert Porcher threw a block on Brad Johnson.

Brad Johnson, who later called the block a "cheap shot," threw Porcher to the ground, and the two started to wrestle. Many players joined in and some Redskins came off the bench.

After order was restored, Tre' Johnson continued to flail his arms toward the Detroit players. In doing so, he struck Leavy, who was trying to restrain him. Offsetting penalties were called, plus an additional unsportsmanlike penalty on Tre Johnson, who was ejected.

Brad Johnson was fined $12,500 for fighting; Porcher, $10,000. Five other players were fined $7,500 each.

Four Redskins were fined $5,000 for coming off the bench. Others were fined $3,000 or $1,500 for "unnecessarily entering a fight area."

Several Redskins players said their actions were justified because of Porcher's block on Brad Johnson.

"When someone goes after your quarterback, you've got to protect him," said guard Keith Sims, who was fined $7,500.

Washington running back Stephen Davis, who suffered an ankle injury against Detroit, and center Cory Raymer, who has a pulled rib-cage muscle, did not practice Tuesday. Their status for the week is day-to-day, a Redskins spokesman said.