Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict will serve a three-game suspension to start the 2016 NFL season after the discipline was upheld in an appeal, per Dan Graziano of ESPN.
Source: Bengals LB Vontaze Burfict’s 3-game suspension upheld by appeals officer Derrick Brooks.
— Dan Graziano (@DanGrazianoESPN) February 11, 2016
This verdict shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone who watched Burfict’s blatant hits on defenseless players Antonio Brown of the Pittsburgh Steelers (watch here) and Maxx Williams of the Baltimore Ravens (watch here).
Burfict was originally fined $50,000 for his hit on Williams in Week 17, and then one week later he blasted Brown in the waning moments of the AFC Wild Card Game between the Bengals and Steelers. The suspension was originally put on the table because of the linebacker’s “repeated violations of safety-related playing rules,” per NFL.com.
The three-game ban takes effect starting in Week 1 of the regular season. Burfict will be able to participate in the team’s preseason schedule as well as all training camp activities.
It’s the latest in a long line of violent offenses for Burfict, who came into the NFL with red flags for similar infractions during his tenure at Arizona State.