When it comes to the Seahawks failing to disclose the in-season knee injury to cornerback Richard Sherman, they weren’t caught with a hand in the cookie jar. They admitted after successfully fleeing the scene that they had taken cookies and eaten them.
And now the NFL, which initially had no comment on the situation, tells PFT that the league is “looking into it.”
In 2009, the league fined the Jets $75,000, then-G.M. Mike Tannenbaum $25,000, and former coach Eric Mangini $25,000 after former Jets quarterback Brett Favre repeatedly admitted that he had an undisclosed arm injury in 2008.
But fines may just be the starting point for the Seahawks. Without regard to any specific team or teams, the NFL has confirmed that “additional discipline can be considered if there are multiple violations” under different policies.
The Seahawks have had three different violations of the offseason workout rules since 2012, culminating in the loss of a full week of 2017 OTA sessions and the forfeiture of a 2017 fifth-round draft pick (the same round in which they found Sherman) for the most recent infraction. The league could impose other penalties, in theory, against the Seahawks for an apparently blatant violation of the injury-reporting rules.
None of this would have even come to light if Carroll didn’t mention the previously unmentioned injury. It invites plenty of speculation regarding how many other teams had unmentioned injuries in 2016 or previously.
But breaking the rules only matters if you get caught. The Seahawks have been caught, multiple times. The question now becomes whether and to what extent they’ll experience the consequences.