Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston confirmed Thursday that he has been suspended for the first three games of the 2018 season after the NFL’s investigation into claims that he groped an Uber driver in March 2016.
Winston released a statement about the suspension via Ian Rapoport of NFL Media that begins with an apology to the Uber driver that runs counter to past claims that the accusations against him were false. Winston also writes that he has given up drinking before moving on to offer apologies to the Buccaneers organization, his teammates and fans.
“The NFL informed me today that I will be suspended for the first three games of the season.
First and foremost, I would like to say I’m sorry to the Uber driver for the position I put you in. It is uncharacteristic of me and I genuinely apologize. In the past 2 1/2 years my life has been filled with experiences, opportunities and events that have helped me grow, mature and learn, including the fact that I have eliminated alcohol from my life.
“I know I have to hold myself to a higher standard on and off the field and that I have a responsibility to my family, community, and teammates to live above the platform with which God has blessed me. I apologize to my teammates, the Buccaneers organization and fans for letting them down and for not being able to be out there for the first three games of the season. Although I am disappointed in the NFL’s decision, I understand the NFL’s process, and I embrace this as an opportunity to take advantage of the resources available to help me achieve the goals that I have for myself.
“I now look forward to putting this behind me and I will continue to work hard every day to be a positive influence in my community and be the best person, teammate and leader I can be.”
Winston will miss games against the Saints, Eagles and Steelers while serving his suspension.