While the NBA dominated the first week of July with free agent mayhem, the NFL has taken a different tack. On Tuesday, the league announced a trio of suspensions. Packers running back Aaron Jones got two games for violating the substance abuse policy, as did Rams guard Jamon Brown. 49ers linebacker Reuben Foster got the same punishment, though the leauge specifically announced that he violated two different guidelines: the NFL's personal conduct and substance abuse policies.
The punishment came after Foster was charged with a misdemanor weapons charge (to which he pleaded no contest) and a misdemeanor marijuana charge (which was dropped after he completed a diversion program). This offseason, Foster also had two felony domestic violence charges against him dismissed, with the judge citing "inconsistencies" in his ex-girlfriend's account.
"I accept the League's decision and am sorry that my mistakes have hurt my team," Foster said in a statement after the punishment was announced. "I have a responsibility to the 49ers, our fans and our community, and I am committed to learning from this situation and making better choices in the future. The support I have received over the last five months has been humbling, and I do not take it for granted."
As for the team's reaction, general manager John Lynch said in a statement: "Although we are disappointed that Reuben will not be with our team for the first two games of the season, we will continue to work with him on making better decisions and eliminating unnecessary distractions. We are encouraged to see Reuben take responsibility for his mistakes, and hopeful that he has learned from them as well."
The 49ers, an offseason darling, will open the season against the Vikings and Lions without their rising star linebacker.
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1. For the first time, Giants cornerback Janoris Jenkins addressed the discovery of a dead body in his home late last month. "With regret and sadness I wish to inform the fans, and the public a good friend of mine Roosevelt Rene a.k.a. Trypps Beats was found dead at my place of residence," he posted on Instagram. Jenkins said that he was in Florida at the time of the incident and added that he was "praying for Roosevelt and his family." Jenkins's brother William has been charged with aggravated manslaughter in connection with the incident.
2. Jason Fitzgerald of Sporting News has listed each team's worst contract. (Count this as the first 'victory' of 2018 for the Baltimore Ravens.) Meanwhile, The Big Lead has a list of the 10 best values league-wide.
3. How might Norv Turner fix the Panthers offense? Brett Kollmann dove into the film to show you.
4. Judge Lance Ito (of O.J. Simpson trial fame) told ESPN that he is hoping Falcons running back Ito Smith has a long and healthy career. So it goes during July in the NFL media world.
5. The Browns added a multitude of talent to their offense. But what will they do to replace Joe Thomas?
6. With Julian Edelman's four-game suspension upheld on Tuesday, Rachel Bowers figured out what exactly the Patriots will be missing for the first month of the season.
7.Gene Steratore shared the story of the day he forgot to bring his referee's hat to a game, in an interview with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
8. NFL.com couldn't wait until Presidents Day to ask players for their football Mt. Rushmores. Jaguars corner Jalen Ramsey had the best answer. "My Mount Rushmore is me with four different expressions."
9. A few hours before the 2018 Hall of Fame class is inducted in Canton, inductee Terrell Owensplans to hold his own event in Tennessee.
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After posting a photo of his grill Wednesday, Kirk Cousins has some explaining to do.
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