ALAMEDA, Calif. âÂ Oakland Raiders wide receiver Antonio Brown has reportedly filed a grievance with the NFL over a league rule that prevents him from wearing his 10-year-old helmet.
ESPN reported that Brown had a two-hour conference call Friday with an independent arbitrator to state his case for why he should be able to use a helmet that is no longer certified by the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment.Â
Brown has not participated in a full practice for the Raiders after starting training camp on the non-football injury list with injuries to his feet that reportedly came from frostbite suffered while getting cryotherapy treatment in France.
Brown was cleared to practice on July 28 and participated in part of two sessions but hasn’t been around the team the past few days.
Brown’s Schutt Air Advantage helmet is not allowed to be worn because of a league policy that players must wear helmets that are NOCSAE certified, a person in the league said. NOCSAE won’t recertify his helmet because it is more than 10 years old.
Schutt discontinued making the helmet three years ago because current technology had moved past it, according to the company.
Brown was one of 32 players using one of 11 helmets last season that are now banned by the league and players’ association. Those players, including Tom Brady, were able to use the helmets last season under a grace period but were required to make the change in 2019.
Painful calf keeping Luck on Colts’ sideline
INDIANAPOLIS â The Indianapolis Colts are taking no chances with Andrew Luck.
Coach Frank Reich said Friday he expects the starting quarterback to miss at least three more practices with a strained left calf, likely keeping him off the field until Wednesday, when the Cleveland Browns come to town for a joint practice.
“He is continuing to progress with his strength, which is awesome,” Reich said on a conference call. “But there still is a degree of pain that he is not comfortable with. Obviously, we are not comfortable with putting him out there.”
The injury kept Luck out of the Colts’ offseason workouts and he was sidelined again after practicing three times over the first four days of training camp, though he never took a snap in full team drills.
Twins DH Nelson Cruz goes on IL with ruptured wrist tendon
MINNEAPOLIS â Minnesota Twins designated hitter Nelson Cruz was placed on the 10-day injured list Friday because of a ruptured tendon in his left wrist.
Cruz was injured on a swing Thursday night in a 7-5 loss to Cleveland that cut Minnesota’s American League Central lead to a single game. Cruz has been a major piece in the Twins’ resurgence this season, hitting .294 with 32 home runs and 76 RBIs while being a steadying influence on the team’s younger players.
Since the All-Star break, Cruz leads the majors with 16 home runs.
Tests revealed a rupture of the extensor carpi ulnaris tendon, but the team is optimistic about Cruz’s potential to return after he showed up Friday feeling good.Â
Brad Keselowski wins pole for NASCAR Cup race at Michigan
BROOKLYN, Mich. â Brad Keselowski has won the pole for the NASCAR Cup race Sunday at Michigan International Speedway.
The Team Penske driver, who has three Cup victories this year, was the fastest Friday in qualifying with a lap of 190.471 mph around the 2-mile oval.
Kevin Harvick will start second, followed by William Byron, Alex Bowman, Clint Bowyer and Chase Elliott. Points leader Kyle Busch will start 24th in the 38-car field. Seven-time champion Jimmie Johnson qualified 12th and is desperately hoping to be in the 16-driver playoffs.
Keselowski won the series championship in 2012 and has 30 career Cup victories. He will make his 21st start at MIS, seeking his first win about 70 miles away from his hometown in suburban Detroit.
Woods withdraws from Northern Trust, citing oblique strain
JERSEY CITY, N.J. â Masters champion Tiger Woods withdrew Friday from the opening FedEx Cup playoffs event with what he described as a mild oblique strain.
It was the first time Woods has pulled out in the middle of a tournament since the Dubai Desert Classic in February 2017, two months before he had a fourth surgery on his back to fuse his lower spine.
Woods, playing in only his second tournament since the U.S. Open in June, opened with a 4-over 75 on a Liberty National course so soft that only one other player had a higher score. It was his second-worst score in 89 rounds in the FedEx Cup playoffs.