Thursday, October 23, 2008
Updated: October 24, 3:22 AM ET
NFL eyes Suggs' 'bounty' comments about Steelers
ESPN.com news services
Terrell Suggs' suggestion that the Baltimore Ravens had a "bounty" on Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward and running back Rashard Mendenhall has gotten the attention of the NFL.
During the "2 Live Stews" syndicated radio show on Oct. 17, when he was asked, "Did you all put a bounty out on that young man [Mendenhall]," Suggs replied, "Definitely. The bounty was out on him and the bounty was out on [Ward] -- we just didn't get him between the whistles."
Also during the interview, Suggs called Ward "a dirty player" and "a cheap-shot artist. ... We got something in store for him."
Ward, who appeared on "PTI" on Thursday, said the bounty talk is "a big honor."
"I am really not going to comment," Ward continued. "But all I have to say to Mr. Suggs is there's a policy in the NFL [against bounties] he should read."
Ray Anderson, the NFL's executive vice president of football operations, said the league is looking into the comments.
"That 'bounty' notion is completely against the rules," Anderson told ESPN.com. "To the extent that someone is engaged in that activity, we will look into it and address it. Yes, we've seen the comments and we're trying to determine the completeness of the circumstances."
Mendenhall sustained a season-ending shoulder injury during the game on a hit by Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis.
Wednesday, Suggs clarified his comments, explaining that the Ravens were merely planning to keep a close eye on Ward, according to The Baltimore Sun.
"There wasn't any bounty," Suggs said, according to the newspaper. "He [the talk show host] asked me if there was a bounty and I just said I'm going to keep a watch on the guy. He [Ward] broke some guy's jaw last week, and he tried to cheap-shot JJ [Jarret Johnson]. He has also cheap-shotted Ed Reed. We're just going to be on alert the next time we play him."
Suggs also on Wednesday clarified comments supporting second-year quarterback Troy Smith as the Ravens' starter rather than rookie Joe Flacco, who currently has the job, according to the Sun.
During his appearance on "2 Live Stews," Suggs said, "Right now, I think [Flacco is] all right. ... But like I said, in the end, Troy should be the starter [because he's] the better man for the job."
Wednesday, Suggs denied saying Smith should start.
"That's not what I said," Suggs explained, according to the Sun. "When he asked me, I said there should be multiple packages. I think both should get a chance to play."
Suggs also said that Flacco and Smith have different strengths -- and that the Ravens should use both to their advantage.
"I think it would better if we had both of them playing," Suggs said, according to the report. "Then again, I ain't no damn offensive coordinator."
ESPN.com NFL writer James Walker contributed to this report.
That 'bounty' notion is completely against the rules. To the extent that someone is engaged in that activity, we will look into it and address it. Yes, we've seen the comments and we're trying to determine the completeness of the circumstances.
-- Ray Anderson, NFL executive vice president of football operations