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NFL Probes Shanahan’s Lie About QB

September 15, 2003

NEW YORK (AP) _ The NFL is investigating whether Denver coach Mike Shanahan broke a rule when he lied about quarterback Jake Plummer’s injury in a victory at San Diego.

The Broncos initially said Plummer sustained a concussion in the second quarter of Sunday’s 37-13 win over the Chargers. After the game, Shanahan announced his quarterback had a separated right shoulder. He said he lied because Plummer might have had to re-enter the game if backup Steve Beuerlein was hurt.

``If Steve went down on the first or second play and Jake went in there with a separated shoulder, they would know that we could not throw the football,″ Shanahan said. ``So, for his sake and our sake, I had to fib a little bit.″

Shanahan’s lie raised numerous questions, NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said Monday.

Rules for reporting in-game injuries aren’t as specific as pre-game injuries, which require a designation _ ``out,″ ``doubtful,″ ``questionable,″ and ``probable.″

But the league expects injury information to be as accurate as possible, Aiello said.

Shanahan could be fined if the league determines a rule was broken.

Plummer was injured in the second quarter after throwing three touchdown passes. He finished 9-of-13 for 94 yards, with no interceptions.

The Broncos carry only two quarterbacks on their roster.