Nearly two weeks ago, I identified a number of NFL storylines worth watching during the break between June minicamps and the start of training camps. Among those topics? Jason Pierre-Paul and his fellow franchised players, extension candidates like Muhammad Wilkerson, and suspension appeals for players like Greg Hardy. Jason Cole of Bleacher Report delves into all three of those storylines today, so let’s round up the highlights:
- According to Cole (video link), the Giants believe that Pierre-Paul “dodged a bullet” and that the hand injury he sustained over the weekend could’ve been worse. The team believes at this time that there’s no nerve damage in JPP’s hand that can’t be recovered from. However, the defensive end will likely undergo a skin graft procedure on his hand – if he hasn’t already – which is an uncommon health issue for an NFL player. Per Cole, the Giants are prepared to place Pierre-Paul on the non-football injury list to start the season, if necessary, which would sideline him for the first six weeks. We rounded up the rest of today’s JPP updates right here.
- Even before the NFL announced that Sheldon Richardson would be suspended for four games for violating the league’s substance abuse policy, the Jets were concerned about eventually getting him locked up to an extension, says Cole (video link). The team considers Richardson a better player than Wilkerson, and initially preferred to extend Richardson, but his suspension, along with concern about his potential salary demands, may make Wilkerson the more likely extension candidate.
- Cole (video link) hears from sources close to Hardy that the Cowboys defensive end is losing his will to fight the NFL in regard to his 10-game suspension, having been worn down by a long legal process. If Hardy’s appeal results in his ban being reduced by two or four games, he may be willing to accept the penalty rather than continuing to fight the NFL by filing a lawsuit against the league.