A report on Friday morning indicated that former NFL kicker Josh Brown would be suspended six games by the league for violating the Personal Conduct Policy.
The reason for the suspension was domestic violence, which might sound familiar to those of you who remember Brown being suspended one game for the same reason last year. The NFL (and the Giants, who re-signed Brown with knowledge of the domestic violence allegations) wound up with egg on its face after the King County (WA) Sheriff’s Office released a trove of documents detailing multiple incidents beyond the one that the league deemed worthy of a one-game ban.
The NFL formally announced the new penalty and explained why they went back to the well.
“In August 2016, Brown was suspended for the first game of the 2016 season after an investigation into an incident on May 22, 2015 with his then wife.”
“In October 2016, the King County (WA) Sheriff’s Office announced publicly that it had closed its investigation in connection with the 2015 incident. As part of its report, however, the Sheriff’s Office released a volume of documents from its investigation. These documents, which previously had been withheld from the public and the NFL, contained information regarding a series of other incidents separate from the May 2015 incident.”
“The league then placed Brown on the Commissioner Exempt list and initiated an investigation into those incidents. Following a comprehensive investigation, which included a review of the documents and interviews with Brown and several other people, the league concluded there was a violation of the Personal Conduct Policy that warranted a six-game suspension.”
The timing of the new suspension has come up for discussion on Friday since it comes as the league is battling Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott about his own six-game suspension and one of the points Elliott is arguing is the inconsistency in the way the league handles discipline under the Personal Conduct Policy. The fact that the documents being used as the rationale for the new suspension have been available for almost a year won’t do much to dissuade those who think the new action on Brown is linked to Elliott.
Brown was released by the Giants last year and has not played in the NFL since then. The league says he elected to accept the discipline rather than appeal and his suspension starts immediately, which means Brown will be doing the same thing this Sunday that he’d be doing if the league hadn’t chosen to suspend him again.