The NFL sent a memo to all 32 teams warning them against faking injuries or face penalties including fines, suspensions and the loss of draft choices, The Associated Press reported Wednesday.
The memo is in response to Monday night's Giants-Rams game, during which Giants S Deon Grant appeared to fake an injury to slow the pace of the Rams' no-huddle offense. The Giants will not be penalized for Monday's incident.
"They couldn't get subbed, they couldn't line up," Rams QB Sam Bradford said Tuesday. "Someone said, 'Someone go down, someone go down,' so someone just went down and grabbed a cramp."
Rams head coach Steve Spagnuolo addressed the issue as well, saying the Rams sent video of Monday's game to the league office for review, as they do every week.
"I'm not sure where to go with that one. It's like the official said to me, because I asked that," Spagnuolo said. "I have the same sense and I talked about it with (referee) Terry (McAulay). They can't make the decision of whether somebody's hurt or not hurt. You just don't know that. I don't know. Part of the game I guess."
The way we see it
The league's hope, clearly, is that sending out a sternly worded memo is that teams will avoid faking injuries. The truth is that this kind of thing has happened as long as football has been around, and it has become more prominent since teams such as the Bengals and Bills popularized the up-tempo attack in the 1980s. The NFL doesn't want to put its officials in the position of deciding which players are hurt and which are not; it's a tough judgment at best.