Pittsburgh Steelers Head Coach Mike Tomlin Fined $100,000, Draft Picks Could Be In Jeopardy

Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

Mike Tomlin's gaffe on Thanksgiving night cost him a pretty penny, but the hits may come later as well to the Steelers organization.

You saw it. You probably shook your head and said "typical Steelers" when you watched the replay. On Thanksgiving night, Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin stepped onto the field of play during a long Jacoby Jones kickoff return and potentially impeded him from scoring a touchdown. After jumping out of the way and inexplicably dodging a penalty flag, Tomlin was caught smiling like the cat who ate the canary.

The incident wasn't behind him though. Almost a week later, Tomlin was hit hard by the NFL to the tune of a $100,000 fine. To the Steelers' head man's credit, he assumed full responsibility, calling the incident "embarrassing, inexcusable and illegal". It still didn't get him clear from getting dinged in the wallet, though.

However, that's not the only punishment that the Black and Yellow could be seeing come their way. Per multiple sources, the NFL is also considering altering draft picks for the Steelers as well. The league will allow the rest of the season to play out to determine the draft order and go from there. Sources say that draft picks could either be forfeited or that the Steelers could drop to the end of a round from their actual draft slot.

Messing with the Steelers' draft picks would be a big issue for the team, as they need as many as they can get their hands on. Though they have been competitive this season, most get the sense that they are in a rebuilding mode and need as many good picks that they can get their hands on. Throw in the fact that the team could be facing salary cap issues again in 2014 and those picks become a premium. Did we mention that they already traded away next year's third round pick?

The fine and punishment to Tomlin and the Steelers are harsh, but the league really wanted to crack down on this issue because of Tomlin's position on the league's Competition Committee. The NFL is also arguing that additional points left on the field could ultimately affect tie-breakers for playoff spots, etc. How that all ends up playing out will likely decide if the Steelers end up having their draft picks jeopardized.

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