The hits keep on coming for the Buffalo Bills. Already without their top two draft picks in 2016, and promising young running back Karlos Williams to start the upcoming season, the Bills now may be without one of their top starters on the team.
Defensive lineman Marcell Dareus is facing a potential four-game suspension for violating the league's substance abuse policy. Dareus, 26, was suspended for the first game of the 2015 regular season for an off-the-field incident in the summer of 2014. Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports it stems from marijuana and it's for either "failed or missed drug tests."
The Bills have confirmed the suspension, and issued the following statement:
“We are very disappointed Marcell chose to put himself first, before his teammates, coaches, the rest of the organization, and fans 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.”
With the suspension, Dareus would not be eligible to return to the Bills until Week Five of the regular season. Dareus would join Karlos Williams in being suspended for the first four games of the season, and according to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the Bills may be subject to a "steep fine" for violating the league's remittance policy.
Dareus issued an apology on his official Instagram account shortly before the news was confirmed:
With deepest regrets I want to apologize to the @BuffaloBills organization, my fans, my family and the entire NFL football community for the incident that led to me missing 4 games for the upcoming 2016-2017 season. I will not #makeexcuses for the events in question and will allow the process to proceed as is required by the @NFL; however, please know and understand I am committed to the game and am more committed to my #Billsorganization and fans. This temporary setback will only fuel my desire and commitment to bring #Buffalochampionships and the #SuperBowl. I ask at this time that you continue to #believe in me and I will continue to invest all that I have to bring honor and respect to the organization and my fans and ultimately bring #Buffalomafia what it deserves - a #SuperBowl! Thank you for continuing to support me - I will rise above this setback, as with every challenge brings an opportunity for growth and supreme #success!
And that's not all. According to Tim Graham of The Buffalo News, veteran outside linebacker Manny Lawson may also be facing a suspension. According to the report, Lawson could be suspended for one game for a domestic violence incident.
The Bills are already without both first-round pick Shaq Lawson (shoulder), and second-round pick Reggie Ragland (torn ACL) for the start of the regular season as well.
|Live video, the latest news and no surveys - download the WKBW app|
|News, forecast and Bills newsletters delivered to your e-mail inbox|