If the Jets want a fight, guard Kelechi Osemele is prepared to give them one.
The 30-year-old intends to file a grievance against the Jets over the fine he received on Saturday for refusing to practice, according to a source familiar with his plans. He has up to 50 days to inform the NFL Players Association and officially file his complaint, though he is expected to do so this week if his situation isn't resolved.
Osemele was fined an undisclosed amount by the Jets on Saturday for what a team source called "conduct detrimental to the team." They had ordered Osemele to practice, but he was physically unable to do so, according to both Osemele and his agent, Andrew Kessler.
It's unclear how much Osemele was fined, but the NFL's collective bargaining agreement gives the Jets the option to fine him up to $13,950 for an unexcused absence from practice. For "conduct detrimental," they could fine him up to one week's pay.
Whether it was truly "unexcused" is the center of the dispute. Osemele said he has been out with a torn labrum in his shoulder, which he suffered in August and aggravated in Week 3. He said the Jets doctor and an independent doctor examined him and recommended immediate surgery. But a team source said those doctors did not recommend surgery and said Osemele could play through the pain. The source also said the doctors determined the injury wasn't suffered in August - that it was a pre-existing condition.
Once Osemele files his grievance, he has a right under the CBA to a hearing with an independent arbitrator. It's unclear how quickly that hearing can take place, though.
In the meantime, Osemele's camp is hoping to find a resolution to this dispute sometime in the next few days, but it's unclear if the Jets are willing. The team drew another line by listing him as "doubtful" for their Monday night game against the Patriots even though it's clear that he won't be playing.
By not listing him as "out," the Jets essentially reserved the right to fine him again if he doesn't play. Then, the Jets return to practice on Wednesday and a source said that there is no way Osemele will, or will be able to practice. At that point he could be fined again -- or even suspended by the Jets.