Suspended Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett plans to appeal his indefinite suspension at a hearing with James Thrash on Wednesday.
According to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, Garrett intends to argue he was provoked by a shot to the groin from Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph.
Garrett was suspended Friday by the NFL, a ban that spans the postseason and set a new standard for punishment stemming from in-game conduct. In Thursday’s win over the Pittsburgh Steelers, Garrett ripped Rudolph’s helmet off of the quarterback’s head. As the confrontation continued, Rudolph lunged at Garrett. Garrett reared back and, using Rudolph’s helmet, struck Rudolph atop the unprotected head.
Thrash is expected to render his decision on the appeal the same day, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, and Garrett plans to plead his case in person.
Browns defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson said Garrett was definitely in self-defense mode on Thursday. Rudolph was fined, not suspended, for his role in escalating the incident.
“Of course he was,” Richardson said of Garrett defending himself. “If a guy scratching at your face, what you going to? The helmet is overboard, let’s get that clear. But defending yourself, I don’t blame him for defending (himself) at all.”
Browns head coach Freddie Kitchens said the Browns “stand by” Garrett despite the poor decision.
“There’s no excuse for that to happen on a football field,” Kitchens said. “I know that. Myles knows that. All the players in the locker room know that. That’s it. There’s no excuse. But, in saying that, we’re going to support Myles Garrett going forward in any way that he needs support.”
According to multiple reports, at least 10 players — including some who left the bench area to join the fracas — have been issued fines.
Steelers center Maurkice Pouncey was suspended three games for kicking and punching Garrett after the helmet was used to hammer Rudolph. Browns defensive tackle Larry Ogunjobi was suspended one game. His appeal was heard Monday.
—Field Level Media