Buccaneers wideout Antonio Brown and safety Mike Edwards were suspended three games apiece without pay for violating the NFL-NFLPA COVID-19 protocols, the league announced Thursday.
According to a press release from the NFL, the players misrepresented their vaccination status under the NFL-NFLPA COVID-19 protocols. That review supported those allegations and found that the three players violated the protocols.
Here is a joint statement from the league and the NFLPA on the suspensions:
“The health and safety of players and personnel is our top priority. The protocols were jointly developed, working with our respective experts to ensure that we are practicing and playing football as safely as possible during the ongoing pandemic. The NFL-NFLPA jointly reinforce their commitment and further emphasize the importance of strict adherence to the protocols to protect the well-being of everyone associated with the NFL.”
Here is a statement from the Buccaneers on the suspensions:
“We appreciate the League’s timely handling of this matter and recognize the importance of the health and safety protocols that have been established. We will continue to implement all league COVID-19 protocols.”
Both Brown and Edwards are eligible to return on December 26 against Carolina. Due to an ankle injury, Brown has not played since Week 6 against Philadelphia.
In addition, free-agent wideout John Franklin III has also been suspended three games for misrepresenting his vaccination status. If signed by a team, he is also ineligible to play in the next three games.
Phoenix Suns star point guard Chris Paul is dealing with more bad luck. According to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, Paul is out indefinitely after he entered COVID-19 health and safety protocol. At this point, Paul’s status for the Western Conference finals is uncertain.
According to the report, if Paul is vaccinated for COVID-19, and depending on the medical circumstance, the isolation period could be shorter. No word on if Paul is vaccinated, but according to ESPN’s Jalen Rose, Paul is vaccinated.
The Suns swept the Nuggets on Sunday night. No word on when the Western Conference finals will begin as the Clippers and Jazz continue to battle it out to determine who will face the Suns. That series is tied at 2.
Paul, 36, battled a shoulder injury in Suns’ first-round victory over the Lakers, and now, he has another obstacle to overcome. Paul was dominant in the series against the Nuggets and averaged 25.5 points and 10.2 assists per game, with only five turnovers.
Clearly, the Suns need Paul to advance to the NBA Finals and win a title, so hopefully, he can get back on the court sooner than later.
Watch below as Suns head coach Monty Williams talks Paul: