Bradley Handwerger / WWLTV.com Sports Reporter
METAIRIE, La. – The NFL has fined Saints safety Roman Harper for his late hit on Panthers receiver Steve Smith.
“The hammer came down,” Harper said. “I’m still walking, so it’s all good.”
Harper was flagged 15 yards for the hit, one in which he ran across the field and as Smith was nearly three steps into the end zone, the safety shoved the receiver down.
The push started a mini-scrum in the corner of the end zone, though none of the players involved in that imbroglio were fined.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that the fine was $15,000, but Harper wouldn’t confirm the amount.
Regardless, Harper, who said after the game he wouldn’t apologize, reiterated Thursday afternoon that the end result was worth it.
“Oh yes it was,” Harper said. “… I think the NFL got the point. I got the point. Everybody that was involved got the point. So I think it was good for this team. I think it was good for everything.”
Harper said at least part of the reason he belted Smith was because he thought the receiver was showboating on his entry into the end zone.
Smith refuted that, calling into question Harper’s understanding of science.
“He felt that I was slowing down and trying to disrespect somebody and that wasn’t my intention,” Smith told reporters in Charlotte, N.C. “With physics, when you accelerate at some point you have to slow down. So I wasn’t slowing down to hot dog in front of someone. Because at the end of the pylons, you have to stop or there’s a large blue pad with some eyes on it that you will run into.
“So I was slowing down, not to disrespect anybody, but to decelerate.”