For the second time in three years, Vikings receiver Jerome Simpson may start the season by not being permitted to start the season.
According to Brian Murphy of the St. Paul Pioneer Press, Simpson missed practice on Monday to travel to New York for an apparent appeals hearing in connection with a suspension under the substance-abuse policy.
Last November, Simpson was charged with DUI and refusing to submit to a chemical test. In January, Simpson pleaded guilty to careless driving and refusing to submit to a chemical test following a plea deal.
It’s his first alcohol-related offense, which means that the standard penalty would be a pair of game checks. But his history under the substance-abuse policy — Simpson’s three-game suspension in 2012 arose from felony drug charges — puts him in line for a suspension following a first offense for an alcohol-related violation of the law.
Simpson’s trip to New York suggests that he has been suspended by the league, that he exercised his right to an appeal hearing, that the hearing has been conducted, and that the Vikings will get an answer before the Vikings face the Rams on September 7.