Earlier today, the Bills were dealt a big blow when they learned that Marcell Dareus has been slapped with a four-game suspension by the NFL for another substance abuse policy violation. Typically, that punishment also results in players losing the rights to all previously guaranteed money under the terms of the contract. For Dareus, that won’t quite be the case.
Dareus’ four-game suspension will cost him $1.505MM in total forfeiture (signing bonus and option bonus). His guarantee in 2016 will void, but the rest of his guarantees will not be affected because very rare language limits the voiding of guarantees to the year he commits the breach, a league source tells ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter. In short – Dareus will get banged for 2016, but the guaranteed cash he is set to receive through 2021 as a part of his six-year, $95.1MM deal will remain untouched. Given that Dareus does have some off-the-field history, one has to wonder why the Bills would consent to such an unusual clause.
In an afternoon press release, the Bills did not hide their frustrations with the star defensive tackle:
“We are very disappointed Marcell chose to put himself first, before his teammates, coaches and the rest of the organization through his recent actions. From ownership down we have made it clear his behavior is unacceptable. We will continue to take the necessary steps to work with him in order that he adheres to the policies set forth by our league. As an organization, we will move forward with our preparations for the start of the 2016 NFL season in Baltimore on September 11.”
Dareus will be forced to sit out games against the Ravens, Jets, Cardinals, and Patriots before returning to the Bills’ active roster on Monday, October 3.
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