NEW YORK -- New England Patriots defensive lineman Vince Wilfork was fined $15,000 by the NFL on Friday for poking a finger inside the face mask of New York Giants running back Brandon Jacobs last weekend.
League spokesman Greg Aiello confirmed the fine, the third this season for New England's 2004 first-round draft pick.
Wilfork was not penalized on the play, which came with less than a minute to play in the first half of the Patriots' 38-35 victory last Saturday as several players from both teams jostled after the whistle. After the game, Wilfork said it was an accident and that he did not make contact with Jacobs' eye.
Wilfork paid a $12,500 penalty for a low, late hit on Buffalo quarterback J.P. Losman during a game on Sept. 23. The hit knocked Losman out of the game and caused him to miss two more games.
Wilfork was also was fined $5,000 for an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty against the Dallas Cowboys on Oct. 14.
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press