Bears rookie safety Winston Venable fined $20,000

Winston Venable got an expensive lesson about launching himself into a wide receiver.

The undrafted rookie safety from Boise State who made the Chicago Bears is now going to have to hope his $20,000 fine is reduced. That is what the NFL zapped him for an illegal hit on Cleveland Browns wide receiver Demetrius Williams last week in the final preseason game. Williams was forced out of the game with a shoulder injury.

Vaughn McClure of the Chicago Tribune reported the big fine for a first-time offender. Venable, who was known for being a hard hitter in college, has indicated he will appeal the fine. With a base salary of $375,000, he makes roughly $22,058 per week, meaning the final equals nearly one week’s pay.

The NFL has allowed Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker Mike Lockley to pay his $20,000 preseason fine in installments. But he’s on the practice squad. If Venable has any luck, he’ll get his fine reduced as a first-time offender.

“Poor kid. That's a shame,'' special teams coordinator Dave Toub said of the fine. ``The fines should be based on the percentage of how much you make.''

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

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