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Leagues and Governing Bodies

NFL could penalize teams for unprofessional pre-draft, combine conduct

The NFL has issued a warning to teams that they could "lose a draft pick and face significant fines" if club representatives "conduct themselves unprofessionally in interviews with draft prospects," according to Rob Maaddi of the AP. A team would "forfeit a draft pick between the first and fourth round and be fined a minimum of $150,000" if it is "determined a club representative displayed conduct that is 'disrespectful, inappropriate, or unprofessional' during an interview." According to the memo, "fines and/or suspensions of individual club employees also could be imposed." The league "reminds teams annually" ahead of the combine that federal and state laws as well as the CBA between the league and the NFLPA "prohibits discrimination based on various factors." This is the first time the NFL has "threatened specific accountability measures" if draft prospects are "asked about any of these subjects." The league also "plans to eliminate the Wonderlic test for prospective players." The NFL has been "seeking ways to improve the professional and medical experience for draft prospects at the combine" (AP, 1/5).

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