The reports, now nearly 16 years old, include players from other teams discussing similar pools climbing into the thousands of dollars. In one report by ESPN, Troy Vincent, then a defensive back with the Eagles, discussed a similar player-funded incentive program run by Eagles players.
Vincent now works for the NFL as a vice president overseeing player engagement.
In the reports, an NFL spokesman is quoted as saying the incentive programs are permitted as long as players use their own money and the amounts players pledge are not exorbitant.
NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said Thursday night that the league would defer comment to its own forthcoming arguments in court.
The NFLPA seized upon the NFL's 1996 stance particularly as it related to Fujita, whom Goodell suspended for one game this season even though he said he could not verify that Fujita participated in the bounty program the league says the Saints ran for three seasons from 2009-11. Goodell said Fujita, now with Cleveland, was still guilty of violating NFL rules by offering his own incentives for big plays and also, as a team leader, by failing to try to stop to the cash-for-hits program overseen by then-Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams.
Baltimore linebacker Terrell Suggs said he hasn't ruled out the possibility of making his season debut Sunday against the Houston Texans.
The notion of Suggs playing seems far-fetched considering he practiced for the first time this season on Wednesday after undergoing surgery in May on his torn right Achilles' tendon. The Ravens also have a bye next week, which would give him more time to recover.
ESPN.com, however, citing league sources, reported that Suggs' family and friends were planning to travel to Houston to watch him play.
* Washington coach Mike Shanahan said injured receiver Pierre Garcon is a "long shot" to play against the New York Giants on Sunday.
Garcon missed practice a second day in a row, getting treatment for the painful swelling on the bottom of a right toe that has kept him out of three of the last five games. He's not expected to practice Friday.
* Minnesota receiver Jerome Simpson practiced full-go for the second straight day and appears ready to return for Sunday's game against Arizona after missing last week's loss to Washington with a back injury.
* Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger left practice after turning his right ankle but expects to play Sunday against Cincinnati.
* Cleveland rookie running back Trent Richardson will wear a protective flak jacket in this week's game against Indianapolis to guard a rib injury he suffered in last week's win over Cincinnati.