The National Football League (NFL) is looking to make faking injuries a thing of the past.
In a memo obtained by the Associated Press, the league says it will start putting emphasis on stopping players from faking injuries. The memo was sent to all 32 teams.
The memo states:
Going forward, be advised that should the league office determine that there is reasonable cause, all those suspected of being involved in faking injuries will be summoned promptly to this office ... to discuss the matter. Those found to be violators will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action for conduct detrimental to the game. We have been fortunate that teams and players have consistently complied with the spirit of the rule over the years and this has not been an issue for the NFL. We are determined to take all necessary steps to ensure that it does not become an issue.
Already, there is a rule against faking. However, it's obviously hard to enforce since teams have to admit they did it. The NFL is now going to let league officials determine if someone was faking. Punishment could involve fines, suspensions of the guilty players and forfeiting draft picks.
The announcement comes on the heels of this past Monday's game between the New York Giants and St. Louis Rams. The Rams were driving down the field using a no huddle offense. When they reached the goal line, Giants S Deon Grant and LB Jacquian Williams simultaneously fell down as if a witch had put a spell on them.
When Williams realized Grant was doing the same thing, he got up quickly. Grant stayed down on the field and got tended to by members of the Giants training staff. He re-entered the game shortly thereafter. He later blamed the injury on cramps and said he was not instructed to fake an injury.
ESPN analysts Ron Jaworski and Jon Gruden basically called Grant a faker and said this was a shameful tactic used by defenders to stop the no-huddle offense. Other players, such as Baltimore Ravens LB Terrell Suggs said this was a good strategy.