Cardinals defensive end Calvin Pace sliced his arm after breaking a window while he and a friend were "playing around wrestling," according to an Atlanta police incident report obtained by the Tribune.
The Cardinals said Pace underwent emergency surgery a week ago, and the team expects him to miss the remainder of the season. According to the incident report, Pace and Arthur Cauthen were wrestling in Pace’s apartment around 3:05 a.m. on the morning of Oct. 15. They “both bumped the window and broke it out,” the report stated.
Two ambulances were called to treat the men. Pace suffered severe lacerations to his right arm. Pace told the Cardinals he slipped and fell through the window when he lost his balance, coach Dennis Green said earlier this week.
Police were called by a woman working at the apartment complex who was standing on the sidewalk beneath the window when it shattered.
Pace and Cauthen told police they were childhood friends and that neither wanted to press charges. No citations were issued. The report listed the sobriety of both Pace and Cauthen as unknown.
Pace’s agent has not returned repeated phone messages, including one left Friday.
Pace has been placed on the Cardinals’ non-football injury/reserve list. Pace’s inclusion on that list gives the team the option of withholding the balance of his salary, and the team continues to gather information on circumstances around the injury. Pace, who was scheduled to make $473,750 this season, is still owed $306,548 — or $27,867 per paycheck.
Through a Cardinals spokesman, vice president of football operations Rod Graves said, as a matter of policy, the team will not comment on how Pace’s salary may or may not be affected. Pace is under contract through 2007.
There is recent precedent for withholding the money. In 2002, running back Thomas Jones broke his hand on a Saturday night and told the team it happened after he banged on a marble top desk reaching for a phone. The Cardinals were suspicious. A police report surfaced accusing Jones of beating up a man at a bar, although it was never proven.
Still, the Cardinals withheld Jones’ remaining salary. Jones never set foot in the team’s complex again, going to Tampa Bay in a trade the following offseason.