Football

Why the NFL suspended ex-Dolphins offensive lineman Richie Incognito for two games

Offensive lineman Richie Incognito, 64, practices with his new Raiders teammates in late May. Incognito, the former Dolphins guard and villain of the team’s bullying scandal, is back in the NFL after his second one-year absence.
Offensive lineman Richie Incognito, 64, practices with his new Raiders teammates in late May. Incognito, the former Dolphins guard and villain of the team’s bullying scandal, is back in the NFL after his second one-year absence. AP

Oakland Raiders offensive lineman Richie Incognito, known infamously for his role in the Bullygate scandal with the Miami Dolphins back in 2013, has been suspended for two games by the NFL for violating the league’s personal conduct policy. He will be eligible to start playing for the Raiders Week 3 against the Minnesota Vikings.

The suspension stems from his August 2018 arrest for making threats at an Arizona funeral home while making funeral arrangements for his father.

It was the latest in a string of erratic off-field behavior fo Incognito. Since he last played a game on Dec. 31, 2017, Incognito has been arrested twice, including once for allegedly threatening his own grandmother, and Baker Acted after chucking dumbbells at another man inside a Boca Raton gym.

But the Raiders gave him another chance when they signed Incognito to a one-year deal in late May.

“I spent a lot of time speaking with Richie,” Raiders coach Jon Gruden told the Miami Herald’s Adam Beasley before a minicamp practice in June. “This is not a far-fetched comeback. This is something he’s thought a lot about. He walked away from the game for very good reasons. I’m not going to get into that. But we like where he is. We like what he’s done. And we like the potential of what he can be.”

Incognito, 36, was a third-round pick in the 2005 draft by the St. Louis Rams and played 12 seasons in the league for the Rams (2005-2009), Buffalo Bills (2009; 2015-2017) and Dolphins (2010-2013). He earned Pro Bowl recognition in 2012, 2015, 2016 and 2017.

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Jordan McPherson covers the Miami Marlins and high school sports for the Miami Herald. He attended the University of Florida and covered the Gators athletic program for five years before joining the Herald staff in December 2017.
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