After losing at MetLife Stadium on Monday night, the Rams accused the Giants defense of faking injuries, prompting the league to send around a memo to all 32 teams reminding them that faking injuries isn't cool. (Giants safety Deon Grant denied he'd been faking when he hit the ground in the first half with St. Louis running their no-huddle offense.) And now Bryan Kehl, a former Giants linebacker and current member of the Rams, has told a St. Louis radio station that Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell coaches his players to do exactly the sort of thing the Rams are accusing the Giants of.
"Perry Fewell coaches that," Kehl said, according to 101sports.com. "He's their DC (defensive coordinator). He coaches that."
Kehl, by the way, appeared in 31 games over three seasons for the Giants, but spent just a month and a half playing under Fewell last year, the defensive coordinator's first in New York. (Kehl played in one game for the Giants in 2010 before being waived and signing with St. Louis.)
Fewell, meanwhile, would neither confirm nor deny that he coaches players to fake injuries. His carefully worded response:
"I can't say I've ever done that and I can't say that I haven't done that," Fewell said Thursday. "I know that the young man (Giants safety Deon Grant) was down and I was glad that he got up, and he was able to play. If the guy can't play to his full potential and he was hurt, then he was hurt. But I can't say I did and I can't say I've never done that. So I'm not gonna go back and forth about it."
It's here that we'll note that, even if Perry Fewell is holding weekly "How to Fake an Injury" seminars at the Giants practice facility, he'd hardly be credited with inventing the practice. We've even heard that sort of non-denial before. Here's Redskins coach Mike Shanahan on whether he's ever told a defense to fake injuries, from an AP piece about the league memo:
"I can't say I have," Shanahan said before pausing. "But I won't say I haven't, either."
Then he smiled.
"It happens all the time, and warnings will come out," he added, "and it's happened again."
The lesson here? This kind of thing happens all the time, and since a league spokesperson says that punishment can only be handed down with concrete proof, it's going to keep on happening, no matter how many memos the league sends around.