Denver Broncos linebacker Joe Mays has been suspended one game and fined $50,000 for an illegal hit against a defenseless player, the NFL announced Tuesday.
During the third quarter of Sunday's 31-25 loss to Houston, Mays drilled Texans quarterback Matt Schaub in the head after he had released the ball, causing Schaub's helmet to go flying across the field.
Mays was whistled for roughing the passer on the play, while Schaub went to the sidelines to have his bloody ear looked at before returning to the field later in the drive.
Mays, who is expected to appeal the suspension, may not practice this week or be at the team practice facility during the suspension.
In his fifth NFL season, Mays has recorded 10 tackles and one-half sack over three games.