Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett reportedly told NFL officials that Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph used a racial slur prior to an ugly brawl in which Garrett struck Rudolph with his own helmet.
The fight broke out in the waning seconds of the Thursday Night Football game on November 14 after Garrett finished a late tackle on Rudolph. The two men tussled on the ground before Garrett ripped off Rudolph's helmet. The two continued to fight as Steelers players intervened and tried to separate the two men. During the brawl, Garrett smacked Rudolph in the head with his own helmet, causing the situation to spiral out of control in the end zone.
Following the game, Garrett was suspended indefinitely by the NFL and will have to meet with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell before he can be reinstated. Two other players were suspended for their roles in the fight. Steelers' center Maurkice Pouncey was handed a three-game suspension for punching and kicking Garrett, while Browns' defensive tackle Larry Ogunjobi received a one-game suspension for pushing Rudolph in the back.
Garrett appealed his suspension and made the claim that Rudolph used racial slurs during a hearing with NFL officials.
Rudolph's attorney, Timothy M. Younger, told ESPN that Garrett's accusations are not accurate.
"The malicious use of this wild and unfounded allegation is an assault on Mason's integrity, which is far worse than the physical assault witnessed on Thursday. This is reckless and shameful. We will have no further comment."
The league said they "found no evidence" to back up Garrett's claim and he lost his appeal with the NFL upholding his indefinite suspension.
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