Blog Entry

Should the NFL fine players who fake injuries?

Posted on: September 20, 2011 12:01 pm
Edited on: September 20, 2011 12:09 pm
 
Posted by Will Brinson



On Monday night, the Rams got pummeled pretty bad in New York (28-16, though it didn't feel that close). But the Giants weren't rolling the entire game. In fact, early in the first quarter, Josh McDaniels put the pedal to the floor and had the Rams running a no-huddle offense that absolutely gassed out the Giants defenders.

The result was, as you can see above, what appears to be a classic case of faking an injury to stop the clock. Now, I don't want to sound like a jerk and call out Deon Grant and Jacquian Williams ... but I will anyway, and I won't be the first person, especially considering that Jon Gruden was practically mocking them in the booth on Monday.

As he should have -- Grant and Williams looked like bowling pins as they hit the ground at the exact same time in a blatant attempt to slow Sam Bradford's march down the field.

This is a problem because, well, there's not much that officials on the field can do. The NFL certainly can't order referees to start flagging people they think are faking injuries. That goes against every single aspect of player safety that the league touts in today's game.

And faking injuries to slow down the pace of the game and/or halt momentum isn't something new either; it's been happening for a long time and in almost every sport, in case you forgot how Ghana managed to burn through clock against the US in the most recent World Cup. As Michael David Smith notes at Pro Football Talk, the NFL has a catch-all rule for "palpably unfair acts" but the league won't use that on faking injuries.

But the league should do something, and it wouldn't be hard to hit Williams and Grant with a fine, either.

"However, if a player demonstration constitutes taunting or unsportsmanlike conduct, or delays a game, a foul will be called, and a fine will be assessed," the NFL's memo to players and coaches regarding league discipline reads.

That passage is technically designed to cover excessive celebration penalties, but clearly the language therein ("delays a game") gives the league some wiggle room with which to fine anyone who fakes an injury in order to slow down the other team.

Now the league just needs to exercise that power.


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Comments

Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: September 20, 2011 3:04 pm
 

Should the NFL fine players who fake injuries?

Redwings.  Your idea is interesting, but suppose the defensive player was behind the line of scrimmage.  Or perhaps was at the point of tackle meaning that the ball would need to be placed on top of his body.  Are you going to penalize 5 yards every 40 seconds until the guy moves.  What if he is actually injured?

Hummmmm, you make some good points and I suppose it's a little more difficult to fix this problem then I first thought.  That being said there must be SOMETHING the league can do about this problem.  Maybe a new rule that states if a team has any timeouts available they must use one if an injured player delays the continuation of the game?  And maybe attached to that rule is something that says if a team is out of timeouts the "injured" player has to miss the entire series he got hurt?

Like i said, there must be something that can be done....  it can't be completely hopeless. 



Since: Jan 2, 2007
Posted on: September 20, 2011 2:59 pm
 

Should the NFL fine players who fake injuries?

Here's another idea: If you stop play due to an injury, you must sit out the next 5 plays.  Might not stop all faking, but it would reduce it.  Now, players just run of ffor ap lay, get a drink of water, and come back in.



Since: Apr 6, 2007
Posted on: September 20, 2011 1:35 pm
 

Should the NFL fine players who fake injuries?

Redwings.  Your idea is interesting, but suppose the defensive player was behind the line of scrimmage.  Or perhaps was at the point of tackle meaning that the ball would need to be placed on top of his body.  Are you going to penalize 5 yards every 40 seconds until the guy moves.  What if he is actually injured?



Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: September 20, 2011 12:51 pm
 

Should the NFL fine players who fake injuries?

When there is video evidence that conclusively shows that a player (or players) faked an injury to slow their opponent, that player, their coach, and their team all need to be fined.  This is a huge breach of sportsmanship and needs to be stopped immediately.

You can stop this nonesense without handing out even one fine.  In soccer if a player goes down away from the play and the other team is moving forward with the ball the referee doesn't have to stop the play until the "injured" player's team gets possession of the ball or at the very least clears it out of danger, out of bounds, etc.   If a player on the defensive side of a hurry up offense says or acts like he's suddenly hurt unless his team has a timeout they can use, the league could allow refs to let the offensive team go ahead and play football.  Let's see how many defensive players play dead on the field if it means the opposing team getting the play off has a man or two advantage on the field.... the answer is defensive players won't do it.   It's the only way to stop this crap from continuing... there is no other way. 





Since: May 27, 2008
Posted on: September 20, 2011 12:45 pm
 

Should the NFL fine players who fake injuries?

No. The last thing the NFL needs to do is come up with more things to fine people over.



Since: Jun 14, 2007
Posted on: September 20, 2011 12:44 pm
 

Should the NFL fine players who fake injuries?

I like Makenz idea... sit out for 1 quarter.. If you're really injured, that would be a precautionary measure, if you're faking it, well, you get to rest a bit longer!



Since: Apr 6, 2007
Posted on: September 20, 2011 12:42 pm
 

Should the NFL fine players who fake injuries?

1 Quarter is way too long, but 1 play is perhaps too small.  I think soccer is an absolute joke because of this stuff.  I think the NFL should be proactive for the good of the game to find a happy medium to prevent fake injuries.  Players in the NHL can get penalized for taking a dive trying to draw a penalty.  



Since: Aug 18, 2011
Posted on: September 20, 2011 12:41 pm
 

Should the NFL fine players who fake injuries?

YES !




Since: Oct 12, 2010
Posted on: September 20, 2011 12:34 pm
 

Should the NFL fine players who fake injuries?

Yes. This isn't soccer and American Football players aren't babies, or at least they shouldn't act like them on the field. But my annoyance with the players of Soccer and their constant injury faking aside, yes I do think they should be fined or at least penalized for delay of game. To prevent this from happening the NFL should mandate that injured players have to sit out at least 1 full quarter after having an injury or faking an injury on the field. For safety reasons and to cut down on the faking of injuries.




Since: Jan 29, 2007
Posted on: September 20, 2011 12:31 pm
 

Should the NFL fine players who fake injuries?

I like bktabooman's idea better (takes away the problem of having someone managing the time off the field). I think this should only apply to defenses.


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