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NFL clears Chargers in 'stickum' investigation

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By PFW staff

The NFL will not punish the Chargers for their alleged use of a "grip-enhancing towel" in their Oct. 15 game vs. the Broncos.

Here is the team's statement:

"The NFL found no competitive violation with the use of the towel and the Chargers were not fined for using the towel. The League has directed all clubs to not use the towel pending further notice. We are appealing the fine for failing to cooperate with a game official’s directive. Our staff member was unaware that the game official was trying to get his attention and he cooperated fully once he became aware."

During the Chargers’ game against the Broncos on Oct. 15, the staff member ran onto the field during a timeout and had Gorilla Gold towels, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune. Those towels were under investigation for having a sticky substance, but they are used widely around the league, which is what Norv Turner told reporters when the allegations first came out.

“As a result of the failure of club staff to follow the directive of a game official to immediately surrender the towels when directed to do so, and to attempt to conceal the towels, the Chargers have been fined $20,000,” the league said in a statement.

The league determined that the Chargers did not gain a competitive advantage, but the towels are now prohibited on game day, the league said.

"In order to ensure that products that may have a possible competitive effect are given appropriate review and testing, our office — after consultation with the Competition Committee — has advised all clubs that the use of towels or other products that contain any type of adhesive substance is now prohibited on game days until further notice."

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