NFL fines New England Patriots' Kyle Dugger for fight with Indianapolis Colts' Michael Pittman Jr.

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- New England Patriots safety Kyle Dugger was fined $10,520 by the NFL after being ejected for fighting with Indianapolis Colts receiver Michael Pittman Jr. last weekend.

Pittman, who also was ejected, was not fined after the NFL reviewed video of the scuffle. The league also did not fine Colts receiver T.Y. Hilton for making contact with an official in the ensuing pileup of players, after consultation with the official.

Patriots coach Bill Belichick had questioned why Hilton wasn't ejected for his actions, which came after Dugger and Pittman scrapped following a running play and players from both teams joined the fray. As order was attempting to be restored, Hilton appeared to push umpire Tra Blake to the ground.

"I don't understand why T.Y. Hilton wasn't ejected for contacting an official," Belichick said. "Intentionally or unintentionally, that has no bearing on the play. And those plays are reviewable and are reviewed."

In 2018, the NFL instituted a rule change allowing the league's command center in New York to eject players for a non-football act such as punching or fighting.

Belichick's ire seemed to be directed at the command center that reviewed the video of the Dugger-Pittman scrap to assist referee Carl Cheffers' decision-making process and didn't identify Hilton's action. Hilton later made a 19-yard catch.

"I mean, he pushed an official. That was pretty clear. But that wasn't called at all. That's a clear-cut ejection to me," Belichick said.

As for what led up to Dugger and Pittman being ejected after a 7-yard run by running back Jonathan Taylor, Dugger explained it from his viewpoint. Pittman was blocking Dugger on the run.

"It was just a physical play all around. I tried to release myself, [and] he obviously got in good position to block me. I tried to release, and I felt like I was being held. So I just kind of tried to spin out of it," he said. "After that, it just kind of escalated with the pushing. It just kind of happened really fast. ... I just have to be smarter. Slow down my thinking."