Chiefs suspend Larry Johnson for two weeks

On Tuesday, the Chiefs suspended Larry Johnson without calling it a suspension.

On Wednesday, the Chiefs suspended Larry Johnson, and they called it one.

Per Kent Babb of the Kansas City Star, the team will be imposing a two-week suspension on Johnson, for conduct detrimental to the team.

The use of the term “week” could be significant, since Week Eight for the Chiefs is a bye.  So he apparently will miss only one game, though he’ll lose two game checks.

Johnson possibly was hoping that the Chiefs would react to his recent assault, Twitter style, on coach Todd Haley and Johnson’s use of a homophobic epithet, both on Twitter and in the presence of reporters, by cutting him.  If Johnson had been released, he would have been entitled to collect the balance of his $4.55 million base salary as termination pay, if no one claimed his contract on waivers.  After clearing waivers, Johnson could have signed with a new team and pocketed both the salary from his new team and the termination pay.

The Chiefs presumably didn’t want to give Johnson full pay to walk away.  Though they still might release him, they’ll save $568,750 by suspending him.

Johnson will be entitled to challenge the suspension by filing a grievance, which ultimately would be resolved via binding arbitration.

UPDATE:  The Chiefs have announced the suspension.  “The Kansas City Chiefs have suspended RB Larry Johnson for Conduct Detrimental to the Club effective immediately,” the team said in a statement.  “Johnson will not be permitted to participate in any team activities or be on team premises until Monday, November 9th.  The Chiefs will have no further comment on Johnson’s status at this time.”

17 responses to “Chiefs suspend Larry Johnson for two weeks

  1. Oh no!!!
    He pocketed $30 Mil+ already, now he loses $500k & can’t play & further subject his body to punishment for a team that has no clue nor direction.
    Feel sorry for L.J.
    He’ll win a SB ring long before KC will.

  2. # SC21 says: October 28, 2009 9:31 PM
    Oh God No! Now who will rush for less than 3 YPC and not score any TDs?
    —————————————
    Answer: The Browns

  3. TMI says: October 28, 2009 9:20 PM
    ‘Oh no!!!
    He pocketed $30 Mil+ already, now he loses $500k & can’t play & further subject his body to punishment for a team that has no clue nor direction.
    Feel sorry for L.J.
    He’ll win a SB ring long before KC will.’
    Why not just say “pigs will fly before hell will freeze over”?

  4. # MkePackFan says: October 28, 2009 10:06 PM
    # SC21 says: October 28, 2009 9:31 PM
    Oh God No! Now who will rush for less than 3 YPC and not score any TDs?
    —————————————
    Answer: The Browns
    ——————————————————
    If I could rate that a 5/5 I would.

  5. TMI says:
    He’ll win a SB ring long before KC will.
    You’re assuming another team (a superbowl contender, no less) will sign an aging running back with very little recent production and an attitude. Ask Shawn Alexander how that works out…

  6. Good call, The Real. Florio needs to bring back ratings.
    Also, rarely mentioned is the fact that the team had to suspend Johnson LAST year also for off-field conduct. The guy has a history of being in trouble due to his temper.

  7. So… the Twitter police are monitoring NFL players for “bad” language? Got it, I’ll be waiting for the NFL’s official Twitter policy regarding abusive language. I’m sure that’ll take priority over: a program to help retired players, or a CBA, or a meaningful 1st round salary cap, or anything else of substance.

  8. Let’s be real. The Chiefs were looking for an excuse after LJ called out Haley. The ‘homophobic slurs’ nonsense is a smokescreen. Sure, LJ was dumb enough to give them an excuse but I don’t believe for a second any of this happens if he didn’t call out his head coach.

  9. screw johnson. let him ride the bench the rest of the season. he’ll still get paid, but don’t let him see the field again. nothing will irritate him more.

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