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Michael Bennett fined $20,000 for illegal hit on Andy Dalton

As expected, Michael Bennett is giving up a chunk of money for his cheap shot on Andy Dalton during Sunday's thriller between the Bengals and Seahawks.

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

The Bengals got the better of Michael Bennett and the Seahawks this past week on the field, and Bennett is getting hit hard off-the-field as well.

The NFL has fined Bennett $20,000 for an illegal hit on Andy Dalton during his team's 27-24 loss in Cincinnati, according to Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio. It's the third time Bennett has been fined this year after he got in a fight during Seattle's game against the Packers in Week 2. He was also fined during the preseason for an illegal hit on Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith.

It was already made clear going into Sunday that Bennett wasn't a fan of Dalton after making fun of him for blowing games for the Bengals during a summer appearance on the NFL Network. Bennett took it another step Sunday after Dalton threw a red-zone interception near the end of the first half.

The hit in question came after safety Earl Thomas picked off Dalton at the goal line and returned it down to the Cincinnati 31-yard line. During the return, Bennett went after Dalton and ended up blindsiding him in the back, a penalty which he was flagged for and which negated the 68-yard return.

Here it is:

What made it worse for Bennett was that he struck Dalton in the head as he was on the ground after blocking him in the back. It was simply uncalled for after Thomas was already well down the field when Bennett started pushing Dalton into the ground. The league takes a very hard stance against any play who takes unnecessary hits on quarterbacks, so it's not surprising at all to see this fine.

Oh, and let's not forget the Bengals won as Dalton led them to a comeback win, including a rushing touchdown of his own which Bennett just so happened to have a great up-close view for. So yeah, Bennett may want to reconsider his views on Dalton, among other things.