FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. — Atlanta Falcons defensive tackle Grady Jarrett had a $20,054 fine for a hit on Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Nick Foles rescinded by the NFL following an appeal, multiple sources told ESPN.
The league initially issued the fine after Jarrett was penalized for roughing Foles in the Falcons’ season-opening loss to the Eagles. The much disputed “body weight on the quarterback” came into play, but Jarrett insisted from the beginning it was a legal hit.
“I feel like not power-driving him into the ground is fair,” Jarrett told ESPN after the initial fine. “I feel like not intentionally hitting him in the head is fair. Form tackle — like I asked when the refs came to speak to us — I don’t think that’s fair to call roughing. And we’ve seen that happen a lot. That’s something that we hope they take into more consideration as far as not being so quick to pull it. If they want to do that, they might as well go to two-hand touch.”
Jarrett made his appeal via video last month.
“I didn’t feel like it was a penalty; the team didn’t feel like it was a penalty; my representatives didn’t feel like it was penalty,” Jarrett said after making the appeal.
Falcons coach Dan Quinn sided with Jarrett from the outset, saying his player used the proper technique on the play.
Jarrett having his fine rescinded should not be shocking. Clay Matthews of the Green Bay Packers was flagged for roughing the passer on three separate occasions this season, two involving body weight on the quarterback, yet never received a fine.
According to ESPN’s Kevin Seifert, there have been 50 roughing-the-passer penalties called so far this season, the most through five weeks since 2001. The Packers lead the way with five such calls. The Falcons have two, with Jarrett’s and defensive back Brian Poole getting fined $20,054 for hitting Drew Brees in Week 3.