Packers defensive tackle Mike Pennel will serve his second four-game suspension of the season for violating the NFL’s substance abuse program, the league announced today. Pennel had been suing the league over a discrepancy in the appeal process, but he dropped that suit yesterday and came to an agreement via the appeal procedure, as Mike Garafolo of NFL.com tweets.
Pennel, 25, could have been facing a 10-game ban as a result of a second failed drug test, but evidently negotiated that suspension down to four contests through meetings with the league. In his lawsuit against the NFL, Pennel contended the league only intended to provide two neutral arbitrators instead of the standard three-to-five, and asked that the entire appeal hearing is put on hold until the NFL appoints a third arbitrator.
In eight games this season Pennel has notched 103 defensive snaps as a rotational lineman behind starters Mike Daniels, Letroy Guion, and Datone Jones. Signed only through 2016 at the minimum salary, Pennel will miss out on his base salary for the remainder of the year and will also forfeit the applicable prorated amount of his signing bonus.
Pennel’s suspension will begin immediately, meaning he will be sidelined for the remainder of the regular season. He will miss games against the Seahawks, Bears, Vikings, and Lions.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.