Cowboys edge defender Randy Gregory has been suspended for the first four games of the 2016 NFL season for violating the league’s policy on substances of abuse, reports Tom Pelissero of USA Today (via Twitter). Gregory will be eligible to return for Dallas’ fifth regular-season game.
Gregory, 23, didn’t see a ton of action during his first NFL season — he was slowed by an early-season ankle sprain and ended up recording 11 tackles over the course of 250 defensive snaps. Viewed as a surefire first-round pick – and a potential top-10 selection – based on talent, Gregory slipped in last year’s draft to 60th overall, where he was snatched up by the Cowboys. Off-field concerns, including a failed drug test at the combine, contributed to his slide.
While Gregory didn’t make any off-field headlines during his first year in Dallas, he has apparently failed several drug tests, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. Rapoport points out that the NFL’s drug policy calls for a two-game fine and then a four-game fine before a player is suspended.
With Gregory set to miss the first quarter of the season and Greg Hardy potentially departing in free agency, the Cowboys figure to be in the market for pass-rushing help this offseason, in free agency and/or the draft.
Pennel, 24, started five games for the Packers last season, recording 24 tackles, a sack, and a fumble recovery on the year. Like Gregory, he won’t be eligible to return to action until the fifth game of his club’s regular-season schedule.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.