Referee Tony Corrente fined for swearing on open mic

The NFL doesn't appreciate obscenities being broadcast over the airwaves, even when it happens by mistake.

The NFL announced Friday that referee Tony Corrente has been fined a game check for his actions Nov. 4 in Indianapolis when the Colts faced the Miami Dolphins.

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"The fine was issued by NFL vice president of officiating Carl Johnson," the statement reads. "In the fourth quarter of the game, Corrente inadvertently left his microphone on during a conference with members of the officiating crew.

"During that conference, Corrente used obscenities that were clearly audible to the network television audience and to the crowd at Lucas Oil Stadium. This conduct is inappropriate for a game official.

"Corrente has apologized to the Colts organization and we are confident it will not happen again."

To put the fine in perspective, players almost never lose an entire game check for an on-field infraction. It was an embarrassing incident, but we're a little surprised how harsh the punishment was here for what was ultimately a technical error by Corrente to not turn off his microphone.

Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.

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