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NFL Rules Analyst Says Titans Should Have Been Flagged for Late Hit on Ben Roethlisberger

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PITTSBURGH — Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has been hit a lot this season, but even he doesn’t usually get hit on running plays.

That’s what happened in the second quarter of the Steelers’ game against the Tennessee Titans on Sunday, when Roethlisberger was hit hard by Titans nose tackle Naquan Jones after handing the ball to Najee Harris.

Jones was not flagged on the play, but CBS Sports NFL rules analyst Gene Steratore said he believes a penalty should have been called against Jones.

“For RPO plays: the longer the QB holds the ball, the closer they are to getting legally hit,” Steratore said. “In #TENvsPIT, the ball was clearly out of Ben’s hands and the defender took 2 steps before driving him to the ground. IMO this should’ve been flagged for Unnecessary Roughness.”


Roethlisberger and Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin both had lengthy conversations with referee Bradley Rogers after the play.

The Steelers’ drive stalled one play after the near-foul and they had to settle for a Chris Boswell field goal.

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