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Report: Ravens' McClain's $40,000 fine halved after appeal

Baltimore Ravens linebacker Jameel McClain's $40,000 fine for a Dec. 5 helmet hit on Steelers tight end Heath Miller was cut in half last week following his appeal to the league, according to *The Baltimore Sun* on Monday.

The Sun cited a league source on the fine reduction and stated that the heavy fine represented 8 percent of McClain's $470,000 salary, meaning that, after taxes, he basically played for free over the final four weeks of the 2010 season.

Despite the NFL's stricter enforcement of potentially dangerous hits, McClain was not penalized for the hit that bent Miller's head and neck backward during the third quarter of the Ravens' 13-10 loss. Miller remained on the turf for several minutes before being helped off the field and did not return.

Even before the game ended, multiple NFL officials said the hit should have been penalized. The fine was announced on Dec. 6.

"Basically what it is, it's a man going to try to make a play," McClain told The Sun in December. "I was within the strike zone. I was going the way that I was taught to proceed in the game throughout my whole life. And if I let off on that play and he catches the ball and possibly streaks down the field for 50 yards, it's a different story we're talking about."

McClain, a three-year pro, finished the season with 71 tackles and one sack.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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