As Browns receiver Braylon Edwards continues to miss practice time due to a mysterious injury that, as rumor has it, he suffered while playing basketball, some league insiders are wondering whether Edwards is faking it.
The fact that Edwards showed up a day late for camp is fueling the theory/hypothesis that he isn’t really hurt, and that he’s merely saying that he’s hurt in order to not have to practice as a protest against the fact that he hasn’t received a contract extension and/or hasn’t been traded.
We freely admit that this is speculation, but we also know based on discussions with multiple league sources that it’s one of the ways that a player who’s under contract and who doesn’t want to risk owing large fines can avoid practicing — and it’s definitely a tactic some agents have at least considered in other cases.
Actually, the four primary, non-T.O.-in-Philly options to display discontent possibly are playing out simultaneously in various NFL cities, all featuring receivers.
In Atlanta, Roddy White is holding out. In Denver, Brandon Marshall looks to be milking injuries after passing his physical. In Cleveland, Edwards arguably is using a pre-physical injury to stay off the field. And in Arizona, Anquan Boldin is biting his lip and showing up for work.
For Edwards, the question becomes whether the Browns eventually call his bluff, requiring him to undergo more extensive diagnostic procedures. Then again, it could be that the Browns prefer to keep him away from a possible season-ending injury if they’re hoping to ultimately be able to trade him to another team.
And we still think that Edwards to the Jets for Thomas Jones and a draft pick or two makes a lot of sense.
Which probably means it’ll never happen.