NEW YORK (AP) — The NFL will keep a close eye on hits to the knees of defenseless players this season, with the possibility of extending the rules protecting such players.
If the league’s competition committee finds enough evidence this season that hits to the knees are “becoming a problem,” it could take action, chief of football operations Ray Anderson told The Associated Press.
• FOXBOROUGH (AP) — The NFL Players Association has filed a grievance to help former New England Patriots star tight end Aaron Hernandez collect an $82,000 workout bonus.
Hernandez’s contract provided for him to receive that amount if he participated in 90 percent of the team’s voluntary offseason workouts.
The Patriots cut Hernandez after he was arrested on June 26 and before he was charged with murder later that day.
• ASHBURN, Va. (AP) — Robert Griffin III could get the all-clear to play in the regular season when he meets with his surgeon Thursday night.
Griffin had reconstructive surgery on his right knee in January.
Mum’s the word on Manziel
COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) — Will Johnny Manziel play on Saturday when No. 7 Texas A&M opens the season at Rice amid allegations that he received payment for autographs?
It was the only thing anyone really wanted to talk about on Tuesday when the Aggies addressed the media. The topic, however, was off limits.
Athletic director Eric Hyman said he’d instructed everyone in the program not to talk about the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback. Reporters asked anyway, and coach Kevin Sumlin responded by saying: “We’re not discussing that.”
ESPN reported Manziel met with NCAA investigators over the weekend. CBSSports.com, also citing anonymous sources, reported that Manziel told the investigators he didn’t take money for his autograph, which could violate amateurism rules and put his eligibility in question.
Pippen won’t face charges
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Scottie Pippen won’t face criminal charges for a fight with a man who authorities say was drunk when he demanded an autograph and photo with the former Chicago Bulls star, then faked seizures after claiming Pippen punched him in the face.
The Los Angeles County district attorney’s office said there was insufficient evidence to bring assault charges against Pippen for the altercation with Camran Shafighi at a restaurant and celebrity hangout on the beach in Malibu.
Haas goes rogue to get Busch
KANNAPOLIS, N.C. (AP) — Gene Haas wanted to build a dream team, with an opportunity to see his name in Victory Lane. He wasn’t going to let Tony Stewart stand in his way of making that happen.
Haas admitted he went rogue in courting Kurt Busch for a non-existent fourth team at Stewart-Haas Racing while Stewart was incapacitated with a broken leg earlier this month. When he finally brought his business partner up to speed on his expansion plans, Stewart balked.
But Haas forged ahead anyway with a multi-year offer to Busch, who was introduced as the newest driver at SHR, where officials are now scrambling to make room at an organization that will double from two cars in 2012 to four next season.