Jags rehab requirement might spark NFLPA grievance

Tom Coughlin is trying to establish a culture of toughness in Jacksonville, but it appears the NFL Players Association might not be on board with the team's strategy involving injured players.

According to NFL Network's Mike Garafolo, the players' union and a group of player agents are upset the Jaguars are requiring injured players to rehab in Jacksonville this offseason until medically cleared. Speaking on Up to the Minute Live on Thursday, Garafolo reported the NFLPA is exploring the possibility of filing a grievance with the NFL over the matter.

"It is rubbing a group agents and the NFL Players Association the wrong way," Garafolo said. "One of the things that they are currently dealing with is the Jaguars have told their injured guys, the guys who were injured at the end of this past season, and were not medically cleared -- that they want them back in Jacksonville rehabbing for four days a week. Well, now the union and the agents are looking at this and saying, 'this is not part of the offseason program, you can't require this. You can't tell my guy he has to go back and rehab in Jacksonville.' So they are exploring the possibility of filing a grievance."

Garafolo reported the Jaguars believe they are not violating any of the terms of the collective bargaining agreement by having injured players rehab at the team's facility.

"I asked the Jaguars for comment on this and a spokesman said that they do have the right, they believe, to take a look at these injured players before the offseason program begins, before the league year begins, to have an understanding of where these guys are," Garafolo said. "They said once these injured players are medically cleared, they are not required to be there. They are not being asked to be there."

Garafolo added that a player representative told him that teams sometimes ask injured players to train at team facilities in the offseason but that it's usually not framed as a requirement.

Coughlin, who was named the Jaguars' executive vice president of football operations in January, told reporters last week that he'd like to see more toughness from the NFL in general.

"This league can benefit from more of (a tough) attitude. This team can," Coughlin said. "You've got to play through some things."

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