Falcons' Hall fined $5,000 for late hit on Lions QB Kitna
ATLANTA -- The NFL on Friday fined Atlanta Falcons cornerback DeAngelo Hall $5,000 for a late hit last Sunday on Detroit quarterback Jon Kitna, a collision that drew not only a 15-yard personal foul penalty against the Pro Bowl defender, but also generated vitriol and threats from Lions players.
The hit prompted Detroit center Dominic Raiola to label Hall, regarded as one of the NFL's premier cornerbacks, "a cheap-shot artist," a charge echoed by several of his teammates. Raiola claimed that he will "try to take [Hall's] head off" if the teams meet again in the future.
Hall countered by providing an Atlanta-area reporter with his address and telephone number, and suggesting he pass them along to Raiola, so he knew where to find him.
Said Hall of Raiola's threat: "I ain't said two words to this chump. [But] if he wants to see me, he can come see me. And tell him to bring his homeboys with him."
A third-year veteran, and the Falcons' first-round choice in the 2004 draft, Hall is known for his outspoken nature and has frequently been cited for his trash-talking during games. Raiola, though, is the first person in the league to suggest that Hall is a dirty player.
The play for which Hall was fined occurred late in the third quarter of the Lions' 30-14 upset victory over Atlanta last Sunday at Ford Field.
On a third-and-13 play from the Atlanta 39-yard line, Kitna avoided a pass rush and scrambled up the middle for a 17-yard gain. As he was sliding at the end of the play, Hall hit him on the left side of the head. Kitna then shoved Falcons linebacker Michael Boley, and Hall responded by hitting the quarterback again, knocking his helmet off.
The Falcons were flagged for a personal foul and penalized 11 yards, half the distance to the goal line. The series ended two plays later, when the Falcons intercepted.
A league spokesman said that Raiola was not fined for his comments in the wake of the incident, but was notified by NFL officials that they were not appropriate.
It is not yet known if Hall will appeal the fine.
Len Pasquarelli is a senior NFL writer for ESPN.com.
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