Green Bay, Wis. — People who follow the Lions on a regular basis might be experiencing déjà vu. For the second week in a row, a Lions player could draw the ire of the league for using his legs to try to inflict pain on an opponent.
And once again, the Lions denied any malicious intent while the opponent expressed little doubt about what happened.
In the fourth quarter of Sunday's 30-20 loss to the Packers, defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh stepped on Aaron Rodgers' injured left leg with both feet. With Rodgers laying on the ground, Suh stepped on him first with his right foot then with his left foot, and on the second step, he lifted his right foot to put all the weight on Rodgers, who tried to push Suh off him.
Suh, as has been the case several times this season, was not available in the locker room or at the podium for interviews after the game, but coach Jim Caldwell offered a defense of his All-Pro player.
"I didn't see it, and I don't think it was intentional either," Caldwell said.
How would he have made that assessment without seeing the video?
"I get briefed on it," he said. "Guys look at it and tell me what they saw, what they thought. Don't think it's intentional. End of story."
Packers coach Mike McCarthy said he hadn't seen the step-and-stand move either, but said someone told him it looked "ridiculous."
"He'll probably say it was an accident," Rodgers said. "We'll see what happens."
Lions center Dominic Raiola was suspended for Sunday's game after he stomped on Bears defensive tackle Ego Ferguson's ankle last week. Raiola said it wasn't intentional, Caldwell defended him, but the Bears and the league office disagreed.
Now, Suh and the Lions will have to wait for the league to determine intent, and there's a chance Suh could be suspended for next week's playoff game in Dallas based on his history. Suh has been fined $216,875 and was suspended for two games in 2010 for stomping on Packers offensive lineman Evan Dietrich-Smith.
Suh stepping on Rodgers wasn't as egregious as Raiola's incident last week, so a fine seems more likely. The NFL should announce his punishment within the next few days.