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NFL teams reportedly making medical reports digital

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Ed Reed landed one last big contract from the Houston Texans in March. He underwent hip surgery shortly thereafter.

The Texans expect the 34-year-old safety to be ready for the season, but it raises the question of how much the Texans knew prior to handing Reed a three-year, $15 million deal that included $5 million guaranteed.

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The NFL could be headed toward a system to decrease the level of uncertainty teams face in evaluating players outside their doors. Yahoo!'s Jason Cole reported Monday that eight teams are participating in the first stage of what the league calls "electronic medical records" reporting.

According to Cole, the records will be a "comprehensive database for information on player injuries." A league source says the new system will help prior or existing injuries come to light before a player is acquired.

"What you should have in this system is a way for any team interested in signing a player -- with player permission -- a chance to access his records so there aren't disclosure issues," a league source told Cole.

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Cole reports that all 32 NFL teams are expected to use the system by 2014. Critics say the system will only lead to players being more secretive, creating a bigger disconnect than what's already the case. We can't imagine the NFL Players Association is thrilled about the EMR system. The union declined to discuss it with Cole.

"I would advise my clients to seek outside doctors and not report anything to the team if they're going to share information," a longtime agent told Cole. "There are obviously some injuries that everybody is going to know about. But I don't want everything my player does to get reported to every team. No way."

The New York Giants, Pittsburgh Steelers and San Francisco 49ers are among the teams reportedly already using the new system. If the Texans aren't already involved, we'd guess they're at least interested.

Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @DanHanzus.

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