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Substance-abuse policy permits suspension of Blackmon


Early Sunday, Jaguars receiver Justin Blackmon landed in the back seat of a cruiser after being arrested for DUI.  Breath testing revealed a sloppy-drunk 0.24 blood alcohol concentration.

Blackmon has since made bail, but both the player and the team has been silent.

Presumably, the Jaguars will issue at some point a perfunctory statement expressing disappointment and/or concern, and deferring further comment until the legal process is concluded.  (In other words, even if owner Shahid Khan is shocked and/or perplexed, it’s highly unlikely that he’ll say so.)

But the league office will have the last word.  Blackmon is subject to discipline under the substance-abuse policy.  (The fact that he has yet to sign a contract won’t protect him; the moment he was drafted, Blackmon became subject to all league policies.)  Under the policy, any disposition reflecting responsibility of any kind for the alleged crime exposes Blackmon to “a fine, suspension, or other appropriate discipline.”

The policy states that, “[a]bsent aggravating circumstances, discipline for a first offense will generally be a fine of two-seventeenths (2/17)” of his base salary, up to a maximum of $50,000.  The problem for Blackmon is the phrase “aggravating circumstances,” which are defined by the policy as “including but not limited to felonious conduct or serious injury or death of third parties, and/or if the player has had prior drug or alcohol-related misconduct.”  If there are “aggravating circumstances, “increased discipline up to and including suspension may be imposed.”

Blackmon has “prior . . . alcohol-related misconduct,” thanks to a DUI incident in college that resulted in a fine.  Though the league apparently has abandoned the practice of disciplining players for pre-NFL behavior that results in a judicial resolution after the player’s NFL career has begun, the league wouldn’t be punishing Blackmon for his past DUI.  Instead, the NFL would be taking his history into account when meting out discipline for the more recent incident.

And since the appeal of the league’s punishment of Blackmon will be handled by the league, the league ultimately will be able to do whatever it wants to do.

So if the league chooses to suspend discipline, the league can do it.

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34 Responses to “Substance-abuse policy permits suspension of Blackmon”
  1. YouMadCauseImStylingOnYou says: Jun 3, 2012 7:50 PM

    So the NFL can suspend a kid for something he did years before he was in the league and for something he did before he even signed a professional contract?

    That doesn’t seem right.

  2. Neftali Ramos says: Jun 3, 2012 7:59 PM

    Doesn’t matter I’d he signed or not once he’s drafted he property of the NFL. If he doesn’t like it, no one is forcing him to play in the NFL. It’s a privilege not a right.

  3. chrisjohnston10 says: Jun 3, 2012 8:02 PM

    He should be sent to jail. As someone who has lost a relative because of a drunk driver, I think two DUI’s is totally disgraceful.

  4. mnajb says: Jun 3, 2012 8:04 PM

    Drunk driving is way more dangerous to others than smoking weed at home.. If Jerome Simpson got 3 games, suspend this guy 4 games at least.

  5. astrosfan75956 says: Jun 3, 2012 8:13 PM

    4 game suspension warranted.

  6. joeytorontosucks says: Jun 3, 2012 8:16 PM

    Take these guys licenses’ away?

  7. dmackerman says: Jun 3, 2012 8:18 PM

    Throw this idiot in jail. 2 DUIs means you don’t understand the consequences of your actions. Lucky he didn’t kill anyone.

  8. 49erstim says: Jun 3, 2012 8:24 PM

    In one of the other threads dedicated to this debacle, some clown tried to say that you’re only upset at this because your team didn’t draft Blackmon…. are you kidding me?! Maybe those of us with morals and common sense are mad because JB could’ve killed somebody. BTW… I was also angry when Aldon Smith got a DUI. So take that argument and walk. Some of us are fans of humanity first and our teams second.

  9. Soulman45 says: Jun 3, 2012 8:34 PM

    I hope these kids still in school is taking a look at these fellows and taking it in.
    Wait till you retire to become a drunk or weed head it will only be a very few years.

  10. Match Point Floppy says: Jun 3, 2012 8:53 PM

    “Doesn’t matter I’d he signed or not once he’s drafted he property of the NFL.”
    No, he’s an employee. Employees are not property.

  11. thegreatgabbert says: Jun 3, 2012 8:59 PM

    Its’ all in the way you look at it. If you’re not a fan of Blackmon, his circulatory system was 1/4 filled with alchohol. But if you are a fan, it was 3/4 filled with blood.

  12. jagsfan11 says: Jun 3, 2012 9:08 PM

    Its a shame because hes a really smart kid

  13. mnajb says: Jun 3, 2012 9:15 PM

    @thegreatgabbert doesn’t know how math works.. Its like he was staring down the rush instead of reading the situation.

  14. taco87 says: Jun 3, 2012 9:17 PM

    He won’t be diciplined for anything he did wrong before he was drafted. But past offenses will be looked at with an option to increase punishment

  15. cpo187 says: Jun 3, 2012 9:19 PM

    This should do wonders for Gabbert’s “growing” season.

  16. cpo187 says: Jun 3, 2012 9:24 PM

    DUI’s and DWI’s punishments have always been too soft from the judicial system. There’s people on the streets with 8-9 of them on their record. I’m sure he gets a slap on the wrist in that aspect, but Goodell will give him a 2 or 4 game suspension to start his career.

  17. thegreatgabbert says: Jun 3, 2012 9:25 PM

    Gene Smith is seaching the web for wide receiver rankings in the 2013 draft.

    Maybe if that overstuffed suit would take the time to actually interview the guys he uses top 10 draft picks on, these awkward moments might be avoided. At least two years in a row, Smith has taken players that never set foot in Jacksonville prior to the draft.

  18. johnnyjagfan says: Jun 3, 2012 9:35 PM

    @thegreatgabbert is right. Mr. Sneaky Gene. Doesn’t meet the player, never gives them any idea they’ll be a first round pick. Can’t let other teams know, right. So we get players we don’t know and that had no idea we were interested.

    Driving a car at .24 is a bad sign that he can drink that much and still think he can drive. Sounds like he’s been at .24 before. That’s pretty drunk. That’s scary.

  19. bucup says: Jun 3, 2012 10:24 PM

    Cut his hands off that drove him drunk!

  20. canuckinamerica says: Jun 3, 2012 10:38 PM

    Jagsfan. He’s a “smart kid”? If you can’t learn/get the message after one DUI (and not too long ago), well I am sorry, he is not a “smart kid” but rather an imbecile. And a very dangerous one at that. There will probably be an obit in his future. And unfortunately not his name. Rather as the drunk driver who killed an innocent person.

  21. stealthjunk says: Jun 3, 2012 10:48 PM

    Someone get to the courthouse and keep an eye out for Blackmon vs. Nat’l Football League in the court filings. It’s only a matter of time.

  22. justwaittilnextyear says: Jun 3, 2012 10:59 PM

    We can all throw stones at this guy if you never had to much to drink and have driven. Me I say learn and glad no one got hurt!

  23. vikingsfanintexas says: Jun 3, 2012 11:04 PM

    thegreatgabbert says:Jun 3, 2012 8:59 PM

    Its’ all in the way you look at it. If you’re not a fan of Blackmon, his circulatory system was 1/4 filled with alchohol. But if you are a fan, it was 3/4 filled with blood.


    That’s 0.24% not 24%. There is a huge different between .0024 and .24, for example death.

    And folks stop giving someone a thumbs up for such a stupid comment.

  24. smokinjoes91 says: Jun 3, 2012 11:33 PM

    Sure glad I’m a Titans fan (Locker, Wright) over a Jags fan (Gabbert, Blackmon)..

  25. darthobama says: Jun 3, 2012 11:43 PM

    Suspend him 2 games at least…my texans play the jagqueens in week 2…hehe

  26. thegreatgabbert says: Jun 3, 2012 11:45 PM

    My math is off because I don’t drink.

  27. thegreatgabbert says: Jun 3, 2012 11:48 PM

    @smokinjoe91 – Yeah, we’re glad you’re a Titans fan too, Joe. Nice when things work out for everyone involved.

  28. 49erstim says: Jun 4, 2012 7:39 AM

    Wow. Its a great day when a Jags fan is dogging out a Titans fan. Lol. Well done.

  29. annes22 says: Jun 4, 2012 7:46 AM

    He has had 2 DUI’s now. It doesn’t matter where or when. It would be jail for the normal person for at least 80 days, so let him go the same route.
    He’s obviously an idiot to do this again. The problem is he now has money, so can pay his way out of it.

  30. swagjag says: Jun 4, 2012 7:47 AM

    Gene didn’t meet Blackmon because his former WR coach was Blackmon’s OC. Gene’s paranoid about tipping his hand. Not saying it’s worked out so far, but he got the guy he targeted.

  31. ksm31311 says: Jun 4, 2012 8:03 AM

    jagsfan11 says:
    Jun 3, 2012 9:08 PM
    Its a shame because hes a really smart kid


    Please never travel outside the trailer park…

  32. im2fast4you123 says: Jun 4, 2012 8:13 AM

    Im so glad the vikes didnt draft blackman. Silly jags fans dont even realize that blackman is gonna be a bust. He is is the next heyward-bey/crabtree. If he woulda been in last years draft with julio jones or aj green he woulda been a thirs rounder. Even michael floyd is and will be better then him and is more talented. Jags have a bust at qb and a bust at the #1 reciever. Good luck in LA jags cuz a slot just opened up for ya lol

  33. smokinjoes91 says: Jun 4, 2012 8:39 AM

    @thegreatgabbert – Look I know you’re all over-excited that there is a somewhat popular thread about the Jags but go ahead and re-read the title and realize that everyone here is making fun of that sorry excuse for a franchise.

    Oh and I hope you already have a couple new names picked out for when #11 is selling cell phone cases in the mall 4 years from now.

  34. raqaiw says: Jun 4, 2012 2:41 PM

    Why would he have to change his screen name? Everything I’ve seen thus far says Gabbert might be a GREAT cellphone case salesman. He has to be better at that than he is at quarterbacking.

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