The NFL gives certain players preferential treatment, says one star quarterback's fiancee, and that's more clear now than ever after last week's incident involving Aaron Rodgers and Ndamukong Suh.

Kelly Hall, who is engaged to Detriot Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, says Suh's reputation contributed to the attention that play received.

In a post to Instagram, Hall quoted former NFL official Mike Pereira, who claimed the NFL only fined Suh $70,000 for stepping on Rodgers because Suh is a high profile player.


Hall writes:

"Thank you. Pretty sure Matthew's leg looks a lot damn worse right now from when he got stepped on/cleated in the same game. But it wasn't Suh.. And he's not Aaron Rodgers, so no one would think twice about it. #nflbias #givemeabreak #DETROITvsEVERYBODY"

Hall's fiancee and his teammates visit the Dallas Cowboys in the divisional round of the NFC playoffs Sunday.

Related Story: Matthew Stafford's Fiancee Puts On Impressive Hoops Shooting Display

Notable Sports Deaths Of 2014

 

Tony Gwynn

Known as Mr. Padre, Gwynn died at 54 after a long battle with cancer. Gwynn was a member of the exclusive 3,000-hit club and was a 15-time All-Star while playing his entire career with the San Diego Padres. His career batting average of .338 is the best for any player whose career began after the end of World War II.

 

Jean Beliveau

A legendary member and former captain of the Montreal Canadiens, Beliveau died earlier this month at 83. Beliveau won 10 Stanley Cups as a player and was a two-time NHL MVP. The Hall of Fame waived its usual waiting period to induct Beliveau in 1972, a year after his retirement.

 

Chuck Noll

One of the most accomplished head coaches in NFL history, Chuck Noll led the Steelers to four Super Bowl titles in the 1970s. He enjoyed a 23-year career in Pittsburgh, but his achievements have often been underrated because of Noll's resistance in dealing with the media or his own self-promotion. He was 82.

 

Jack Ramsay

Jack Ramsay, or "Dr. Jack," led the Portland Trail Blazers to its only franchise championship in 1977 as part of a Hall of Fame career. Ramsay was 89. Ramsay also won a NBA championship as general manager of the 1967 Philadelphia 76ers. A fitness buff who participated in many triathlons, Ramsay became a fixture on ESPN Radio and TV.

 

Bob Suter

Suter is the first player from USA Hockey's 1980 "Miracle on Ice" team to die. A defenseman from Wisconsin, Suter broke his ankle just three months before the Olympics but didn't let that stop him from making it to Lake Placid. Suter never played in the NHL, but his brother had a 17-year career with Calgary, Chicago and San Jose. His son, Ryan, earned an Olympic silver medal in 2010. Bob Suter was 57 when he suffered an apparent heart attack in September.

 

Bob Welch

In 1990, Bob Welch did something no pitcher has accomplished since: He won 25 regular-season starts for the Oakland Athletics. That achievement earned Welch the AL Cy Young Award for that year. Welch's life ended abruptly this year at 57 years old after his body was found at his California home. A cause of death was never released to the public.

 

Don Zimmer

Zimmer was a baseball lifer, serving as a player, coach and adviser over the course of a 66-year MLB career. Zimmer's career brought him to a number of teams and saw him win six World Series as a player and manager. He continued to work as an adviser until his death at 83.

 

Pat Quinn

Quinn coached Canada to the 2002 gold medal, which ended the nation's 50-year Olympic drought. Quinn was twice the NHL's coach of the year, with the Flyers and the Canucks. He helped both franchises reach the Stanley Cup Final. Quinn, who played more 600 NHL games as a defenseman, died in November after a lengthy illness. He was 71.

 

Oscar Taveras

Taveras was a promising outfielder from the Dominican Republic who had a bright future with the St. Louis Cardinals. Shortly after the Cardinals' postseason defeat, Taveras was killed in a car accident in his home country. He was 22.

 

Ross Lonsberry

Lonsberry was a winger who helped the Flyers win two Stanley Cups during the heyday of the Broad Street Bullies in the 70s. Lonsberry, who also played for the Kings and Penguins, died of cancer in May. He was 67.

 

Alvin Dark

Alvin Dark won World Series championships as both a player and manager. He is best known for sparking a ninth-inning rally that lifted the Giants to the National League pennant in 1951. Dark was 92.

 

Bryan Burwell

Bryan Burwell was a respected columnist for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The newspaper reported that Burwell died after a battle with cancer at 59 years old. Burwell's career included time with HBO's "Inside the NFL," USA Today, Detroit News, New York Daily News and Newsday.

 

Rob Bironas

The longtime NFL kicker displayed erratic behavior just before his death in a car crash in September. Police later revealed that Bironas had a blood alcohol content more than twice the legal limit, and he was traveling at double the speed limit at the time of the accident. He was 36.

 

Brad Halsey

Halsey's MLB career, which included time with the Yankees, Diamondbacks and A's, gave up Barry Bonds' 714th career home run, which tied him with Babe Ruth for second on the all-time list at the time. Halsey died in November from a fall or jump from a 100-foot cliff in Texas. He was 33.

 

Conrado Marrero

At the time of his death, Conrado "Connie" Marrero was the oldest living former MLB player. He passed away just two days before his 103rd birthday.

 

Ernie Terrell

Terrell is best known as an accomplished boxer who briefly held the heavyweight belt before losing it to Muhammed Ali in 1967. Terrell lost the belt in a lopsided grudge match that atoned for a previous loss. He was 75 years old.

 

Frank Cashen

At one point in his life, Frank Cashen seemed destined for any future but one in baseball. He earned a law degree while working as a sports journalist before taking a public relations job with the Baltimore Orioles. But Cashen then became an executive with the club and helped the Orioles win the World Series in 1966 and 1970. He was also a general manager that helped the New York Mets win a World Series in 1986. Cashen was 88.

 

Carol Vadnais

A defenseman for 17 NHL seasons, Vadnais won Stanley Cups with the Canadiens (1968) and Bruins (1972), and he helped the Rangers reach the Final in 1979. He was 68 when he died of cancer in August.

 

Earl Morrall

He might have been outshined by other quarterbacks, but Earl Morrall was an accomplished NFL veteran who led Miami to Super Bowl III against Joe Namath's Jets. He also backed up Bob Griese and contributed to the Dolphins' perfect season and Super Bowl victory in 1972. Morrall was 79.

 

Alfredo Di Stefano

Considered one of the greatest all-around players in soccer history, Alfredo Di Stefano was a Spanish-Argentinean soccer player best known for starring on Real Madrid's dominant clubs in the 1950s. The European team won five straight Champions' Cups with Di Stefano at the helm. He died at 88 years old from a heart attack.

 

Jojo Nicolas

The former defensive back from the University of Miami died one day after he was involved in a serious car accident. He was 24. The Giants signed him as an undrafted free agent in 2012, but cut him in training camp.

 

Rubin 'Hurricane' Carter

Carter's 27-12-1 record as a professional middleweight boxer may not turn heads en masse, but the pugilist's story has little to do with sports. Carter is famous for being wrongfully convicted of murder and spending nearly 20 years in prison before he was finally freed. Carter's story was the inspiration for the Bob Dylan song, "Hurricane," and he was portrayed by Denzel Washington in the 1999 biopic, "The Hurricane." Carter was 76 years old.

 

Ralph Wilson

One the NFL's most important owners, Buffalo's Ralph Wilson died last March at 95 years old. Wilson played a critical role in founding the AFL in 1960. In 2009, he was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

 

William Clay Ford

Ford was the last surviving grandchild of Henry Ford, father of the automobile. He was also the owner of the Detroit Lions, which is staying in the Ford family for the immediate future. Ford died of pneumonia at 88 years old.

 

Don Meyer

Meyer may be an unknown to most sports fans, but he's a massively successful figure in basketball. The coach ranks first all-time for most wins at any level of college basketball. Meyer's 926 wins were earned at small colleges Hamline, Lipscomb and Northern State in Aberdeen, South Dakota. He was 69 years old.

 

Jim Fregosi

Fregosi was a six-time All-Star as a shortstop before becoming a manager for four teams. He led the Angels to the A.L. West title in 1979 and the Phillies to the N.L. pennant in 1993. One of the most popular men in the game, Fregosi died in February after several strokes. He was 71.

 

Dr. Frank Jobe

Jobe changed baseball forever by performing the first successful Tommy John surgery in 1974. He also performed the first major reconstructive shoulder surgery for a major league baseball player in 1990. A member of the Baseball Hall of Fame, Jobe was 88.

 

Ralph Kiner

A former Navy pilot during World War II, Ralph Kiner was regarded as one of the nicest guys to play in the major leagues. He was a Hall of Fame hitter who enjoyed a successful second career as a broadcaster for the New York Mets. Kiner was 91.

 

Malcolm Glazer

A prominent businessmen who owned both the NFL's Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Manchester United of the English Premier League, Glazer was one of the most visible and powerful owners in sport. His health worsened by two strokes suffered years earlier, Glazer was 85.

 

Jimmy Ellis

Ellis managed to claim the heavyweight boxing title belt for a short time after Muhammad Ali was stripped of the award. It was a landmark achievement for Ellis, who had previously served as a sparring partner for Ali. After a long battle with Alzheimer's disease, Ellis died this year at 74 years old.

 

Jerry Coleman

A second baseman on four World Series championship team for the Yankees, Coleman earned further fame as a broadcaster. He started calling games with the Yankees but became an institution in San Diego. In 2005, he won the Ford C. Frick Award for broadcasters at the Hall of Fame. He was 89 when he died in January after sustaining a head injury while falling at home and pneumonia.

 

Louis Zamperini

Zamperini is the Olympic runner and World War II airman whose story is being told in the movie "Unbroken," produced by Angelina Jolie. After a crash in the Pacific Ocean, he survived for 47 days on a raft before being held as a prisoner of war by the Japanese. His story was told in a 2010 biography by Laura Hillenbrand, the basis of the new movie. Zamperini was 97 when he died of pneumonia in July.

 

Elena Baltacha

Arguably the top women's British tennis player of her generaion, Baltacha's death followed a shocking diagnosis of liver cancer just weeks after marrying her tennis coach. Four months later, Baltacha died. She was 30 years old.

 

Caldwell Jones

A star big man who spent time in the ABA as well as the NBA, Jones was a premier defender of his time and well-respected for his willingness to do the dirty work that didn't get the glory of scoring points. Jones' 12 blocks in a game still stands as an ABA record. He died of a heart attack at 64.

 

Tito Vilanova

After a successful career as a player, Vilanova became even more notable as the head coach for F.C. Barcelona. He was a part of 14 championships as an assistant coach before winning the national championship in his first season as head coach, but Vilanova's failing health forced him to resign in 2013. He died the following year from cancer.

 

Eusebio

Eusebio wasn't only one of Portugal's greats -- he was one of the greatest soccer players ever. His illustrious career included 11 Primeira League titles, a Euro Cup, and a Ballon d'Or. Eusebio achieved great success after his birth into poverty in East Africa. He is still considered a pioneer of African soccer. He died of heart failure at 71.

 

Lou Hudson

Hudson was a six-time All-Star who averaged 20.2 points in a 13-year NBA career. His No. 23 is just one of three retired numbers in Hawks' franchise history. He was 69 when he died in April, shortly after suffering a stroke.

 

Jakell Mitchell

Mitchell was a freshman on Auburn's football team when he was fatally shot during a party at an apartment complex. The shooting reportedly stemmed from a verbal altercation between Mitchell and his shooter. He was 18.

 

Frank Torre

The brother of Hall of Fame player and manager Joe Torre, Frank Torre played seven seasons in Major League Baseball and won the 1957 World Series with the Milwaukee Braves. After several health problems, Torre suffered a heart attack and died at 82 this year.

 

Robert Newhouse

A fixture at fullback during the Cowboys' glory days in the 70s, Newhouse also threw a touchdown pass on a trick play against Denver in Super Bowl XII. Newhouse, who gained a career-high 930 yards in 1975, was 64 when he died in July. His health had been declining since a 2010 stroke.

 

Orlando Thomas

Orlando Thomas burst into the NFL in 1995, leading the NFL in interceptions as a rookie. The safety played for the Vikings until 2001. After his football career ended, Thomas was diagnosed with ALS. Following his death at 42 years old, his agent revealed that Thomas' weight had dwindled to just 70 pounds.

 

Ed Sprinkle

Young generations of football fans may not know his name, but Ed Sprinkle was a star in the early days of the NFL. His name betrayed his tenacity as a player: The defensive standout was nicknamed "The Meanest Man in Pro Football." He was 90 years old.

 

Alice Coachman

Coachman was the first African American woman to win an Olympic gold medal when she captured the high jump event at the 1948 Olympics in London. She was 91 when she died of cardiac arrest in July.

 

Marvin Barnes

A rogue character whose personality personified the zany old ABA, Barnes averaged 24 points and 15.6 rebounds as a rookie for the Spirits of St Louis in 1974-75. Barnes, who helped Providence reach the 1973 Final Four, lasted just two seasons in the NBA as he got into trouble with drugs.

 

Kosta Karageorge

After the walk-on disappeared from Ohio State's football team earlier this season, head coach Urban Meyer and others called for him to return safely. Unfortunately, Karageorge was later discovered dead, the victim of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He was reported to be suffering from the consequences of multiple concussions.

 

Julian Jones

Jones was regarded as one of the top football recruits in the state of Alabama, which made his death even harder to understand: Jones committed suicide this past fall, devastating the Hazel Green, Alabama community. He was 16 years old.

 

Fuzzy Thurston

A guard who helped Vince Lombardi's Packers run the sweep to perfection, Thurston won six NFL championships with Green Bay. He was suffering from Alzheimer's disease and cancer when he died at 80 in December.

 

Red Klotz

The history of basketball is heavily entwined with the biography of Red Klotz. He was a former NBA point guard with the original Baltimore Bullets, who is best known for forming the teams that play against and tour with the Harlem Globetrotters: the Washington Generals and the New York Nationals. He was the oldest living NBA world champion at the time of his death. He was 93.

 

Hashim Khan

Squash isn't a well-known sport in America, but Khan was a well-known star in other parts of the world. The Pakistan native won seven British Open Squash Championships in eight years and later moved to America to become a squash instructor. Though birth records aren't conclusive, he is believed to have been 100 years old.

 

Jim Swink

A former All-American running back for TCU, Swink spurned the NFL in 1957 to attend medical school. He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1980 and practiced medicine until he came down with lymphoma. He died from complications from lymphoma at 78.

 

The Ultimate Warrior

A former professional wrestler who legally changed his name from James Brian Hellwig, The Ulimate Warrior collapsed in a parking lot clutching his chest and died from complications of heart disease. He was only 54 and had been inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame just three days earlier.

 

Kevin Ward Jr.

Ward Jr. died after he exited his sprint car during a race and was struck by fellow driver Tony Stewart. While Ward's family and other observers contended that Stewart tried to run him over, authorities declined to press charges after a preliminary investigation. Ward was 20 years old.

 

Tom Veryzer

A career .241 batter, Veryzer played 12 seasons in Major League Baseball with the Tigers, Indians, Mets and Cubs. He died of a stroke at 61.

 

Bill Conlin

Conlin was the 2011 recipient of the J.G. Taylor Spink Award, the Baseball Hall of Fame honor for sportswriters, but allegations of child molestation just a few months later ended his career. A longtime columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News and a regular panelist in the early days of ESPN's "The Sports Reporters," Conlin was 79 when he died in January.

previous next