The NFL sent a memo Wednesday to all 32 teams warning of fines, suspensions and loss of draft picks if the league determines players faked injuries during a game.
Yet several players admit its an accepted practice, and some coaches hinted they are not above condoning phony injuries if it provides a competitive edge.
“I’ve been places where it has been (taught),” said Browns linebacker Scott Fujita, a member of the players’ union executive committee. “They have a name for it and I’ve been places where it’s been pre-called. I’ve been places where it’s one player who has been designated. Maybe I’m getting everyone in trouble, but I’m just being honest.”
In the memo obtained by The Associated Press, the NFL reminded teams of league policy that calls on coaches to discourage the practice. There is no specific rule on the topic.
Nonetheless, two days after there was speculation that the Giants’ Deon Grant faked an injury against the Rams during Monday night’s game, the NFL is warning of disciplinary action.
Rams coach Steve Spagnuolo said Tuesday the team notified the league office that it suspected the Giants were feigning injuries in St. Louis’ 28-16 loss. Rams quarterback Sam Bradford said it was obvious the Giants were just buying time with St. Louis running a no-huddle offense.
Around the league
Jacksonville Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio named rookie Blaine Gabbert the starter, switching signal-callers three days after Luke McCown threw four interceptions against the New York Jets. … The Chiefs placed running back Jamaal Charles on season-ending injured reserve, taking one of the most dynamic playmakers in the NFL off the active roster. Charles tore the ACL in his left knee in Sunday’s loss to Detroit. … San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Braylon Edwards underwent a surgical procedure on his injured right knee and will be out for a while, though coach Jim Harbaugh refused to speculate or provide further details. … New York Giants receiver Domenik Hixon will miss the rest of the season after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee for the second straight year. … Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick took a small step toward returning from a concussion, taking part in a morning walkthrough. There is a chance he will play against the New York Giants on Sunday.