Bills defensive end Mario Williams repeatedly has pointed to a wrist injury when addressing the lackluster start to his tenure in Buffalo. But the Bills haven’t disclosed Williams on the injury report, and now the NFL is getting involved.
Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that the league is investigating whether the Bills violated the injury policy by failing to disclose Williams’ injury, which he has said occurred in the preseason.
The Bills, per Schefter, defend the failure to add Williams to the list by pointing out that he hasn’t missed a practice rep or a game. But, per Schefter, here’s what the league’s policy provides: “All players with significant or noteworthy injuries must be listed on the report, even if the player takes all the reps in practice, and even if the team is certain that he will play in the upcoming game. This is especially true of key players and those players whose injuries have been covered extensively by the media. . . . This policy is of paramount importance in maintaining the integrity of the NFL.”
Frankly, the Bills shouldn’t need to see the language of the injury policy in order to realize that Williams should have been disclosed on the injury report. Teams routinely disclose injuries to players, even when they fully participate in practice. Also, because the “probable” designation technically means that the player is virtually certain to be available to play, the slightest ding should land a player on the list.
If/when the league office fines the Bills, look for them to respond by putting 53 guys on the report with whatever random minor ailment they may have.
Either way, they can thank their $100 million free agent for their current 345 Park Avenue pot of hot water.