Wednesday, May 2, 2012
Historical perspective on Vilma suspension
By Pat Yasinskas
The season-long suspension of New Orleans Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma pretty much is unprecedented in the NFL.
There have been plenty of one-year suspensions (and some longer) for substance-abuse violations. But Vilma’s suspension ranks as one of the longest in history.
With help from the Associated Press, by way of ESPN Stats & Information, here’s a list of the longest non-substance-abuse suspensions in NFL history:
- Art Schlichter, life, suspended one year for gambling in 1983, never reinstated
- Merle Hapes, eight years, suspended for conversing with known gambler in 1946, reinstated in 1954
- Frank Filchock, three years, suspended for conversing with known gambler in 1947, reinstated in 1950
- Michael Vick, two years, two games, suspended indefinitely in 2007 after pleading guilty to role in dogfighting
- Plaxico Burress, two years, suspended for duration of jail term in 2009 after pleading guilty to criminal possession of a weapon
- Donte’ Stallworth, one year, suspended for one year after pleading guilty to DUI manslaughter in 2009
- Paul Hornung, one year, suspended one year for gambling in 1963
- Alex Karras, one year, suspended one year for gambling in 1963
- Adam Jones, one year, suspended one year for violating Personal Conduct Policy in 2007
Those suspensions all involved off-field actions. Here is the list of the longest NFL suspensions for on-field incidents: