NFL owners to discuss playoff expansion at meeting

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NFL owners likely will consider expanding the playoffs by two teams, beginning in 2015, when they hold their spring meetings in Orlando next week, but a vote on the subject is uncertain.

A groundswell for raising the number of playoff qualifiers to seven in each conference figures to get plenty of support from the 32 owners. Most notably, Arizona’s Bill Bidwill, who saw his Cardinals go 10-6 and not get in, while Green Bay (8-7-1) qualified by winning the NFC North.

“There will be a report on the potential of expanded playoffs,” NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said Wednesday. “We don’t know if there will be any vote at this meeting.”

Also on the agenda will be alterations to extra points, changing who oversees video replay reviews, and further clamping down on the use of racial slurs by players during games.

FALCONS: Re-signed free-agent defensive tackle Peria Jerry.

Perry, a first-round pick from Mississippi in 2009, set career highs in 2013 with 35 tackles and 3½ sacks.

UNION PRESIDENT: Eric Winston was elected president of the NFL Players Association, three years after he was active for the union during the lockout.

COURTS: Arizona authorities say they won’t seek to extradite former NFL All-Pro safety Darren Sharper on rape charges until his sexual assault case in California is resolved, but Sharper isn’t waiting for officials in Arizona to act.

Sharper’s lawyers asked a court in Phoenix on Tuesday to hold a hearing to determine whether their client, who is facing charges that he drugged and raped two women in October at a nightclub, can be granted bail in Arizona, arguing that the former player is being deprived of due-process in not getting such a hearing.

FLORIDA STATE: Quarterback Jameis Winston will miss just one practice and be available for all other spring football activities.

The Heisman winner is the closer on the baseball team ranked No. 2 in the country by Baseball America. The Seminoles have a weekend series at Georgia Tech starting April 11, but Florida State football coach Jimbo Fisher said Wednesday that the quarterback will be at the Spring Game on April 12.

Jimbo Fisher says offensive lineman Ira Denson has been dismissed from the team.

Denson was arrested Tuesday and charged with petit theft and fraudulent use of a credit card over $100


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