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NFL fines Jets, Mangini $125K total for breaking injury report rules

The NFL assessed $125,000 in fines to the New York Jets and former coach Eric Mangini on Wednesday for violating the league's rules on reporting injuries last season.

The Jets failed to place quarterback Brett Favre, who's now with the Minnesota Vikings, on the injury report during the final month of last season even though he had a torn biceps tendon.

The league announced it had fined the Jets $75,000 and Mangini and Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum $25,000 apiece. Mangini now coaches the Cleveland Browns.

"We have been fully cooperative with the League throughout this investigation and respect their decision," the Jets announced in a statement.

Said Mangini in a statement released by the Browns: "I have worked with the league on this matter and now consider it closed. My focus is on our preparations for (Sunday's game against) the Broncos."

Hiding injuries could affect an opponent's preparation, and the NFL has stepped up its policing of such practices. Commissioner Roger Goodell told NFL Network's Rich Eisen on Wednesday that he had sent a memo to all 32 teams "making sure they understand the importance of this."

"I believe in following the rules, whether it's on the field of play or it's our policies," Goodell said. "We believe those rules should be followed, and if clubs don't, or other personnel don't, we will take disciplinary action. This is an important rule to the integrity of the game. All clubs are following the rule. And if someone violates it, we will discipline as we did with the Jets today."

Last week, Tannenbaum admitted the Jets should have listed Favre as "probable" on their injury reports. That came one day after Favre said he believed he was hurting the Jets because of the injury and discussed it with the coaches and the front office. He said he would have been willing to sit out, even though that would have ended his streak of consecutive starts, which now stands at 270 games.

Tannenbaum said the Jets didn't list Favre on the report because the injury wasn't severe enough to require daily treatment and there was never any doubt the quarterback would play. Tannenbaum also assumed full responsibility for the mistake.

Mangini said he has always abided by the league's guidelines for injury reports.

"That was true there (in New York). It's true here (in Cleveland)," Mangini said. "It'll be true every week of the season and that's how we approach it."

Favre led the Jets to an 8-3 start and first place in the AFC East. But he threw nine interceptions down the stretch and the team lost four of its last five games, missing the playoffs. Favre retired after the season and later was released by the Jets, but he came out of retirement last month and signed with the Vikings.

Favre told reporters last week that he might not be able to play in all 16 games with the Vikings, even after his biceps tendon was surgically repaired. He said he's playing with a torn rotator cuff and suggested he might have a cracked rib.

Favre completed 14 of 21 passes for 110 yards and a touchdown in the Vikings' season-opening 34-20 victory over Mangini's Browns on Sunday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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