Moss’ fine too large

After the Vikings’ loss to the St. Louis Rams in the NFC divisional playoff game on Sunday, fans around the state lost a year’s worth of enthusiasm. Even some of the players expressed their despair that a season’s efforts were soon to be in vain, none more than Randy Moss when he squirted water on an official after a questionable call. However, on Wednesday the NFL levied a fine on Moss entirely disproportionate to his actions.
The league cited Moss for unsportsmanlike conduct for the incident in the fourth quarter, in which he squirted field judge Jim Saracino with a Gatorade bottle full of water. Moss was assessed a $40,000 penalty for the infraction, which occurred after Moss became upset when a pass-interference call was not made.
Although Moss’ behavior was certainly unprofessional and disrespectful, the consequences were not severe enough to justify such a large fine. Last November, fellow Viking Duane Clemons was fined $7,500 for punching another player in the groin, and Chris Carter was fined $5,000 for spiking a football that hit an official in the face. The fine levied on Moss should only be reserved for the most egregious infractions against officials, not an unsportsmanlike gesture.