Raiders’ Vontaze Burfict Has Season-Long Suspension Upheld
Oakland Raiders linebacker Vontaze Burfict's appeal of a season-long suspension for his helmet-to-helmet hit on Indianapolis Colts tight end Jack Doyle has been denied, meaning he will sit out the rest of the 2019 season.
The league announced appeals officer Derrick Brooks' decision on Wednesday. Brooks was appointed jointly by the NFL and the NFLPA.
Burfict was ejected in the second quarter of the Raiders' Week 4 31-24 win late last month. He was initially flagged for hitting Doyle in the head across the middle. But after the officials conferred, Burfict was thrown out.
The league said that Burfict will not be paid during the suspension, which covers the postseason as well. The league cited his repeated violations of unnecessary roughness rules in handing out the longest suspension ever for an on-field incident.
Burfict was repeatedly suspended by the NFL for egregious hits and violating its policy on performance-enhancers. He was fined regularly for hits that crossed the line, most notably the one to Antonio Brown's head that helped motivate the Steelers to rally for an 18-16 playoff win in the 2015 season. That led to a three-game suspension to start the 2016 season.
Burfict was also fined $112,000 last season for hits on Brown and James Conner in a game against Pittsburgh.
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