It was not too surprising that Detroit Lions linebacker Stephen Tulloch was flagged for his big block on Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder during an interception return last week. The block was considered a blindside hit by the officials, and since the hit came on a quarterback, the referees didn't even hesitate to throw a flag.
It appears the league didn't even hesitate to fine Tulloch, as he was docked $10,000 this week for the hit.
NFL spokesman Randall Liu said in an e-mail that Tulloch was fined "for roughing the passer; he struck an opponent away from the play."
I'd love for the NFL to explain how Ponder can be considered a passer when he is running around after an interception. On a punt return, are flags thrown if the punter is blown up on a block? I get that it was a big hit on a quarterback, but at some point the NFL needs to realize that they shouldn't always be off limits, and just like some of the fines handed out after the Saints game, I think a penalty was a sufficient response to what happened. I don't understand the need to fine Tulloch for a clean block.