In the first quarter of last night's Monday Night Football game, the New York Giants needed a way to slow down the St. Louis Rams' no-huddle offense, as the Rams had driven all the way down to the Giants 7-yard line.
How did the Giants do it? Two of their players dropped to the ground and faked an injury at the same time.
The live footage did not catch the dives by the Giants. ESPN had cut away to a shot of the Giants sideline, and when they returned to the line of scrimmage, the whistle had already blown for an injury timeout. However, that gave the MNF broadcast team an opportunity to review the footage during the commercial break to see where the Giants "injury" took place.
The footage clearly shows the New York Giants getting back to the line of scrimmage to line up for the next play, when suddenly linebacker Jacquian Williams drops down to the ground, with Deon Grant falling down shortly after that. Williams immediately got right back up to his knees, while Grant stayed down and was taken off to the sideline by the Giants training staff.
The tactic was clearly effective as the Giants defense was able to hold the Rams to a field goal on that drive, so the strategy works. Since this happened on Monday Night Football while everyone was watching, expect other teams to start doing this.
UPDATE: The Rams have filed a complaint with the league office. We'll see where this goes.
UPDATE 2: The NFL has sent a memo to all teams warning of penalties if the league determines that a player faked an injury. Giants safety Deon Grant made a statement saying that he was not faking his injury. Interestingly, linebacker Jacquian Williams has not been approached publicly on the subject.
The New York Giants Strategy To Slow The Rams... [Sports Grid]