Browns' Garrett suspended indefinitely after hitting Steelers' Rudolph in head with helmet during Thursday Night Football brawl

CLEVELAND -- Cleveland Browns' Myles Garrett has been suspended without pay indefinitely after ripping off Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph's helmet and clubbing him on the head during the final seconds of Thursday Night Football.



In a statement issued Thursday, the NFL said Garrett's suspension will be "at a minimum for the remainder of the regular season and postseason - and must meet with the commissioner's office prior to a decision on his reinstatement."



Garrett was also fined an additional amount.

"Garret violated unnecessary roughness and unsportsmanlike conduct rules, as well as fighting, removing the helmet of an opponent and using the helmet as a weapon" the statement read.



The former No. 1 overall pick's shocking actions on national TV come after he made strides in cleaning up his game after picking up some personal fouls earlier this season.



Following Cleveland's 21-7 victory, Garrett was contrite, but the damage was already done.

"What I did was foolish, and I shouldn't have allowed myself to slip like that," Garrett said softly. "It's out of character."



In 2006, Tennessee's Albert Haynesworth was suspended five games after he stomped on Dallas Cowboys center Andre Gurode's head. Haynesworth's punishment is the longest for on-field behavior in league history.



After pulling Rudolph down with eight seconds to go following a short pass, Garrett wrestled with Pittsburgh's QB on the ground with both players grabbing at each other's heads. When they got to their feet, Garrett ripped off Rudolph's helmet and swung wildly, hitting the second-year QB on top of the head.

Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett, left, gets ready to hit Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph, second from left, with a helmet during an NFL football game.



Garrett was thrown to the ground by Steelers guard David DeCastro and center Maurkice Pouncey threw punches and kicked Garrett in the head as players from both sidelines poured onto the field in a scene that goes to the top of the list of skirmishes in the bitter Pittsburgh-Cleveland rivalry.

Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett (95) is punched by Pittsburgh Steelers center Maurkice Pouncey (53) and tackled by offensive guard David DeCastro.


The Steelers were livid about Garrett's conduct.

"I don't know how he got to the point that it's OK to use a helmet as a weapon," said Steelers defensive tackle Cameron Heyward. "I know we play a sport that's violent, but it should never have gotten handled like that. That dumb stuff shouldn't be allowed. For someone to use a helmet as a weapon is uncalled for."

Garrett, Pouncey and Browns defensive tackle Larry Ogunjobi were ejected and all face league discipline.

"Pouncey has been suspended without pay for three games and fined an additional amount for fighting, including punching and kicking an opponent," the NFL's statement read.

Ogunjobi has also been suspended without pay for one game and fined an additional amount for "unnecessary roughness, specifically for shoving an opposing player to the ground during an altercation."

Both Steelers and Browns organizations have each been fined $250,000.

Browns coach Freddie Kitchens said Garrett apologized to him and the defensive end said he intends to talk to his teammates.

"The next time I see them, I'll address them," he said. "I am hurting my whole team with what I did, and it could come back to bite us. I don't know what kind of repercussion I face, but I have to be better."



The Browns will visit the Steelers on Dec. 1.

The NFL says additional discipline for other plays is forthcoming.

Kitchens was disappointed with Garret for losing his cool and overshadowing a huge win for the Browns, who have won two straight games to salvage a season that was starting to slip away.
"You have to be able to maintain your composure in times like that and under no circumstances do we want anything to do with anything like that," Kitchens said. "I am embarrassed. Myles is embarrassed. It is not good. He understands what he did, he understands it is totally unacceptable, and we have to get through it."

Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett (95) hits Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph (2) with a helmet during an NFL football game Thursday, Nov. 14, 2019.



The Browns have been among the league's most penalized teams, and their lack of discipline has been a poor reflection on Kitchens in his first year as coach.

Cleveland committed eight penalties for 121 yards against the Steelers, and Browns defensive backs delivered two helmet-to-helmet blows that gave concussions to Steelers wide receivers.



The second such shot was by Browns safety Damarious Randall, who lowered his head and delivered a nasty hit on Steelers rookie Diontae Johnson, who suffered a concussion and had blood coming from one ear.

Kitchens took issue with the idea his team is reckless, and said he was disappointed for his other players.

"We have five seconds to go in a game. That can not happen," he said. "We have five seconds to go in a game - the biggest game that this team has won. Never beat Baltimore and Pittsburgh in the same year since 1999, and then we have to talk about this. There are 52 other guys on the team that that hurt, and it is going to hurt moving forward. We do not condone that. Myles understands what he did wrong."

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph (2) goes after Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett (95) during the second half of an NFL football game, Nov. 14, 2019.


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The Associated Press contributed to this report
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