San Francisco linebacker Reuben Foster facing up to 11 years in prison on domestic violence charges

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Foster is facing three charges following his arrest for domestic violence.

San Francisco 49ers linebacker Reuben Foster is facing three charges stemming from his arrest for domestic violence in February, prosecutors said Thursday.

The Santa Clara District Attorney’s Office said Foster had been charged with domestic violence, attempting to prevent the victim from reporting a crime and possessing an assault weapon.

If convicted on all counts, Foster could face as much as 11 years in prison.

The statement said Foster, 24, left his 28-year-old victim with a ruptured ear drum after physically assaulting her at their home in northern California in February.

Reports have said Foster dragged his victim by the hair before punching her eight to 10 times in the head.

“Our focus is on holding accountable those who hurt their intimate partners,” Santa Clara prosecutor Kevin Smith said in a statement.

“Our office handles between four and five thousand domestic violence cases each year. We only hope that this case illuminates the tragic regularity of the rest.”

The National Football League has cracked down on domestic violence cases in recent years.

Any player involved in a domestic violence case can be banned for up to six games in the first instance. A second incident can lead to a lifetime ban.

“We continue to monitor all developments in this matter which is under review of the personal conduct policy,” the NFL said in a statement on Thursday.

The 49ers said the details of Foster’s charges were “disturbing.”

“We will continue to follow this serious matter,” the team said. “Reuben is aware that his place in our organization is under great scrutiny and will depend on what is learned through the legal process.”

Provided by AFP

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Johnny Manziel plays competitively again in The Spring League as he attempts a comeback to the NFL

Jay Asser 8/04/2018
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Johnny Manziel had 83 yards and a touchdown pass in his debut in The Spring League.

Johnny Manziel took one of the initial steps in a potential return to the NFL by playing his first competitive football game in over two years.

The polarising quarterback strapped on the pads and helmet for about two quarters of action in Austin, Texas on Saturday in The Spring League, a showcase event for players hoping to make it onto the roster of a professional team.

Manziel had his ups and down, including completions on his first seven passes, two scrambles for 11 and 10 yards, and a vintage touchdown toss in which he rolled out to the right and zipped an off-balance throw to the back of the end zone to wide receiver Antwan Goodley.

He was also sacked three times and couldn’t engineer a scoring drive after getting the ball back down four points with two minutes remaining, finishing 9-of-15 for 83 yards in a 11-7 loss.

His return to the field in the modest settings were a far cry from his days as a top prospect in college football with Texas A&M and as a starting NFL quarterback with the Cleveland Browns, but Manziel is working his way back to the game after off-field issues stemming from substance abuse and bipolar disease derailed his career.

“The main thing, #ComebackSZN for me is like no matter where I end up and no matter what happens football-wise, at least my life, at least, you know, I’ve repaired a lot of relationships that needed work, I’ve repaired a lot of myself that needed a lot of work and I’m able to run back on the field, something I didn’t know if I’d ever get a chance to do again,” Manziel said after his debut in The Spring League.

“It’s disappointing, some of the things that happened, but nevertheless this is a huge step for me. I put pads back on.

“A lot of people would have just wrote me off to even get to this point. I’m definitely emotional about it. I’m definitely happy about it. This isn’t the end goal for me, but I’m having fun again.”

Manziel will have one more chance to show what he’s still capable of in The Spring League’s final round of games on Thursday. After that, the 25-year-old will hope to earn interest from an NFL team, with the Canadian Football League (CFL) a secondary option. His rights are currently held by the CFL’s Hamilton Tiger-Cats.

In all likelihood, a two-game sample size in a developmental league won’t sway NFL teams one way or the other on Manziel. The reason why he fell out of the NFL had little to do with his talent as he showed promising glimpses as a playmaker with both his arm and legs in his brief two-year spell.

The real question marks surrounding Manziel have to do with his professionalism and behaviour off the field. NFL teams will want to see if he has developed better habits and that’s exactly what Manziel is hoping to show during his time in The Spring League.

“The message that I’m sending is showing up every day and going to meetings,” he said.

“Being engaged in everything that is going on during practice and in the game. I can’t control what is going on [with NFL teams’ interests] and I don’t know what’s going on in NFL meetings.

“If that’s the case, if the NFL is something that pops up, cool. If not, I’m going to work until I get back there. We’ll see how things play out.”

Before Saturday, Manziel’s last appearance in a competitive game came in the Browns’ 17-13 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs on December 27, 2015, when he threw for 137 yards and an interception, while adding a career-high 108 rushing yards on 11 carries.

In 14 NFL games, Manziel had a completion percentage of 57.0, averaged 119.6 passing yards per game and 6.49 yards per throw, tossed seven touchdowns and seven interceptions for a passer rating of 74.4, and produced 259 rushing yards and one rushing score.

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Thomas Davis states he's 'not a cheater' after Carolina Panthers linebacker earns four-game ban for failed drug test

Jay Asser 7/04/2018
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Thomas Davis has missed only three games the past six seasons.

Carolina Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis will be suspended for the first four games of the coming NFL season after violating the league’s policy on performing-enhancing drugs.

Davis made the announcement on social media on Friday, calling it “one of the saddest days” of his career, while also stating “I am not a cheater”.

In the video posted with the message, Davis said: “I was completely caught off guard by this. I’ve never in any way done anything to try to intentionally cheat the game. It’s one of those situations where the NFL rules are clear; they state that you are responsible for what you put in your body.

“I’ve taken the same supplements for the last seven or eight years and never had any issues. Been tested numerous times over the years while taking the same stuff. And, unfortunately, these are some of the things that happens when you take supplements.

“I’ve never tested positive for a steroid or HGH. It’s not one of those situations. It ended up being an estrogen blocker that triggered a positive test for me. I just want you guys to know that in no way would I ever do anything, like I said, to cheat this game or to try to create a competitive advantage over anybody.”

The 35-year-old Pro Bowler, who was honoured with the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year award in 2014, has missed only three games over the past six years.

Between him and Luke Kuechly, the Panthers have one of the best linebacker duos in the league and one that helped to allow the seventh-fewest yards last season with 317.1 per game.

While the NFL has yet to release the schedule for next season, Carolina will be tasked with playing in one of the toughest divisions as the NFC South featured three teams with at least 10 wins last year.

Davis had previously announced he would retire after 2018, but said in his video that the ban may change his plans.

“I’m going to serve this four-game suspension and I’ll be back ready to go back out there with my teammates,” he said. “And, you know, who knows? Maybe this isn’t my last year.”

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