Suppose John Henderson perpetrated the same kind of assault as he did on Andrew Whitworth on, let's say, Ben Roethlisberger or Peyton Manning. Does anyone believe the standard of discipline would be the same? In this case, Steelers and Colts owners, management, coaches, etc., would throw absolute conniptions if Henderson wasn't suspended and more heavily fined for trying to severely injure and potentially end the career of their franchise's most valuable player.
Quarterbacks are worth more dough than offensive linemen to an organization and occupy a much more visible place on a team, so I guess that means a different standard would apply when deciding on discipline. Just my theory, and it appears to be backed up by recent actions coming out of Goodell's office. If this is so, it is complete nonsense. All players at every position should hold the same value to the NFL when it comes to such matters.
It's apparent the NFL is all about the dough now, and it's apparent that realistic discipline does not exist.