The Arizona Cardinals have decided to release former Pro Bowl linebacker Daryl Washington mere weeks after he was reinstated by the NFL after a three-year absense due to suspension.
Washington himself announced the decision in a statement to Pro Football Talk on Thursday.
“I want to thank the Cardinals organization, especially Mr. Bidwell and Steve Keim for drafting and believing in me, and their continued support,” Washington said in a statement provided to PFT. “We’ve had some really positive and productive discussions this week, and at the end of the day we mutually agreed it was best for both sides to get a fresh start.”
The Cardinals then followed this up with an offficial announcement of the release.
We have released LB Daryl Washington.
— Arizona Cardinals (@AZCardinals) May 11, 2017
Washington was one of the best young linebackers in the NFL prior to off-field issues derailing a once promising career. Back in 2012, the former TCU standout recorded 134 tackles to go with nine sacks and two forced fumbles. That earned him his first and only Pro Bowl trip.
Since then, it has been a downward spiral for the former second-round pick. He’s been subjected to multiple suspensions for violating the league’s substance abuse policy, a span of time that has seen Washington miss three full seasons of action.
Despite this, Washington seems ready to make an impact on the gridiron once again.
“I’m in the best shape of my life, and very much look forward to the next opportunity, where I will again play at an All-Pro level and help my team make a championship run,” Washington continued.
The linebacker surely does deserve a second chance. And at 30 years old, he can still provide value on the field. It will be interesting to see where he lands.