The rift between the New York Jets and guard Kelechi Osemele continues to widen, and it took another step on Saturday. Osemele and the NFL Players’ Association are considering taking action against the Jets’ team doctor after Osemele had shoulder surgery on Friday but the damage was more extensive than anticipated, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Per Kelechi Osemele’s agents: Osemele’s surgery went well yesterday, but damage to shoulder was more extensive than anticipated. His representatives and NFLPA are now considering specific action against the Jets’ team doctor for violations of State Medical Board Regulations.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 26, 2019
Jets doubted injury, fined Osemele
The Jets have doubted the severity of Osemele’s injury, which is a torn labrum in his shoulder. Jets doctors cleared Osemele — who has not played since Week 3 — and told him that surgery could wait until the offseason and that the injury was sustained before he was traded to the Jets before the season. Osemele sought a second and third opinion, and doctors told him that he needed surgery.
On Friday, Osemele was a no-show at practice after the surgery, but the Jets decided to fine him $579,000 for an “unexcused absence.”
‘I don’t know what I’m supposed to do’
“I’m 30 years old,” Osemele told the New York Daily News earlier in the week. “Let’s be realistic about this. I’m in a lot of pain. My tolerance isn’t probably the same as it used to be … But I can’t go. I just can’t go. I don’t know what I’m supposed to do in this situation. I can lift my arm. It just hurts.”
Osemele has been open about his injury, and if the severity is indeed that bad, the Jets could be in trouble — if not already. It’s one thing to clear somebody to play; it’s another to essentially fine a player for having necessary surgery.
Osemele has already filed a grievance against the team. Now, going after the team medical staff certainly does not put the Jets or the NFL in a good situation.
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