NFL needs to 'drop the hammer' on Myles Garrett, former players say

Former NFL players Chris Valletta and Sean James think the league needs to hold Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett accountable for his actions.

Garrett was suspended indefinitely on Friday for his role in an ugly brawl that took place at the end of Thursday night’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, an altercation that resulted in two other suspensions and hefty fines levied against both teams.

Appearing on "Fox & Friends: Weekend" with host Pete Hegseth, Chris Valletta and Sean James both said this needs to be a "learning experience."

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"Helmet comes off -- you stop. Every football player knows that. Inexcusable from Myles Garrett, no doubt," said Valletta. " I think what important is...one of the things football teaches you is your ability to control your emotions. And even when you're provoked, which Myles Garrett was...the ability to control your emotions and not lose your cool is actually harder than getting in a fight in the first place."

James said that while this is "what happens in the heat of battle," these "are things that you've dealt with from high school to college and there's accountability."

"I mean, there's rules. When you look at chapter 17 in the rule book it was something that probably could have just been a penalty if he [had] not swung the helmet [with the] intent to actually hurt the other player," he added.

"So I think, you know, it's bad for Cleveland. It's bad for the league. You know this is America's culture. We love football. And, any time something like this happens we have to be able to address it and use this as a learning experience," he told Hegseth.

In a statement, the NFL said Garrett will be suspended “at a minimum for the remainder of the regular season and postseason and must meet with the commissioner’s office prior to a decision on his reinstatement."

Garrett’s teammate Larry Ogunjobi and Pittsburgh Steelers center Maurkice Pouncey were also suspended and fined. The NFL said more suspensions resulting from the incident were imminent. The league also fined the Browns and the Steelers $250,000 each over the incident.

Shortly after the league announced his suspension, Garrett released a statement through the team apologizing, echoing what he told reporters immediately after the game.

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“Last night, I made a terrible mistake. I lost my cool and what I did was selfish and unacceptable,” Garrett’s statement said. “I know that we are all responsible for our actions and I can only prove my true character through my actions moving forward. I want to apologize to Mason Rudolph, my teammates, our entire organization, our fans and to the NFL. I know have to be accountable for what happened, learn from my mistake and I fully intend to do so.”

Valletta added: "The NFL has worked hard in changing the narrative for the last few years from, you know, domestic violence and murder and protesting and revising a lot of the player personal conduct policies. So, they've got to drop the hammer here.

"I do feel for Myles Garrett, but you know he made a bad decision. A lesson and a message has to be sent to the NFL. It's a tough situation."

Fox News' Ryan Gaydos contributed to this report.