The Dallas Cowboys drafted defensive end Randy Gregory in the second round of the 2015 NFL Draft despite his off field issues, including a failed drug test at the 2015 NFL Combine. The Cowboys are now finding out why so many teams passed on the talented pass rusher in the draft, as the NFL announced today that he will be suspended for the first four games of the 2016 regular season for violating the NFL Policy and Program for Substances of Abuse, according to NFL reporter Gregg Rosenthal.
Gregory never produced the numbers expected of him in his rookie season in Dallas, recording 11 combined tackles and no sacks in 12 games played. The Cowboys front office had no problem taking on players with off field incidents in Gregory and defensive end Greg Hardy last season, and now will be lacking pass rushers at the beginning of next season. Hardy becomes an unrestricted free agent in March and has made it known that he would like to return to Dallas.
While Gregory's suspension was big news for Cowboys fans, it wasn't the only suspensions to be handed down by the NFL before the weekend. Baltimore Ravens tight end Nick Boyle has been suspended for the first 10 games of the 2016 regular season for his second offense in violating the league's policy on performance enhancing substances, according to Ravens reporter Ryan Mink.
The Ravens selected Boyle in the fifth round of the 2015 NFL draft, and he played in 11 games last season, recording 18 receptions for 153 yards. If Boyle violates the PED policy a third time, NFL rules state he would receive a punishment of a two-year suspension from the league.
Meanwhile, Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Mike Pennel received the same punishment as Gregory for violating the NFL Policy and Program for Substances of Abuse, according to NFL reporter Mark E. Ortega.
Pennel recorded 25 combined tackles, a sack and forced a fumble in his second season in the league, and will now have to miss the first four games of the 2016 regular season.