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Report: Panthers S Mitchell critical of Goodell

The SportsXchange

Carolina Panthers safety Mike Mitchell criticized the NFL and commissioner Roger Goodell on Monday, claiming he is being targeted for fines, ESPN.com reported.

Mitchell was fined $7,875 for taunting on a play in which St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford suffered a season-ending knee injury on Oct. 20.

"Roger being Roger, I guess," Mitchell said, according to the report. "To be honest, I think there is a little bit of a targeting system they have out. I think I'm one of the guys they'd been looking for, but I'm OK with that."

Mitchell said he has been fined five times for a total of nearly $45,000.

When asked where the fines went, Mitchell looked into a television camera and said, "Right in Roger's pocket. Right in his pocket. On camera, right in his pocket is where it's going."

Mitchell said he performed a similar gesture twice during the game, but was only fined for the latter because, he said, it involved a "big-name quarterback."

"So obviously there is a bias there, there was a quarterback injured on the play and they want to fine me for that," Mitchell said. "If you're going to fine me for the act, then fine me for both of them. Since you didn't, though, Roger, don't come back and try to fine me."

"I'm just being targeted because I play football and am physical," Mitchell said. "I'm not out here cheap-shotting guys or doing dirty plays like you've seen people from Detroit do. I'm not going to name any names, but I'm not out here doing those things, so why I'm getting fined I have no idea.

"I'm going to keep playing my game. It's working for our defense. As long as I'm not getting penalties, then I'm fine with this."
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