Alfonzo Dennard to be sentenced Thursday

April, 9, 2013
The New England Patriots will learn what the immediate future holds for starting cornerback Alfonzo Dennard during sentencing on Thursday. The second-year player was found guilty of three charges, including assault of a police officer, in February. The off-the-field incident happened in Nebraska in 2012.

Dennard faces a maximum of six years in prison. He started seven games for the Patriots last season and recorded 35 tackles and three interceptions. The former seventh-round pick was one of the biggest steals of last year’s draft. But any amount of jail time -- whether its one year or more -- puts Dennard's career with the Patriots in jeopardy.

Even if Dennard manages to avoid jail time, the NFL could discipline the corner with a suspension. Therefore, Patriots cannot expect Dennard to be ready for Week 1 of the regular season. New England must continue to explore the cornerback position via the NFL draft, regardless of Dennard's verdict this week.

James Walker | email

ESPN Miami Dolphins reporter



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