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In the wake of former New England Patriots players Aqib Talib and Brandon Spikes questioning the team's injury reporting procedures, the NFL has investigated and cleared the team.
"It was determined that the Patriots complied with the injury report procedures regarding both players," NFL Senior Vice President of Communications Greg Aiello wrote in an email.
Talib's remarks in his introductory news conference with the Denver Broncos in March sparked the issue, when he was asked if his hip injury was a concern.
"The Patriots have their way of reporting stuff, but I haven't had a hip problem since Tampa," Talib said. "The injury I had was actually a quad injury, it was reported as a hip injury, but that's how they do things."
About one week later, when Spikes was interviewed on WGR in Buffalo, he addressed being placed on season-ending injured reserve by the Patriots before the team's first playoff game. Spikes had been laboring with a knee injury and also didn't show up for practice one day during the team's playoff bye week, but seemed to be contesting that the decision to go on injured reserve was mutual.
"I heard they put me on IR and stuff like that. That was just a false report," Spikes said in the radio interview. "That's just how things go there. Almost like what happened with Talib and his hip."
Teams can be fined by the NFL if the league deems the injury report has been manipulated in some way or an injured player was omitted.