New York Jets running back Mike Goodson was suspended without pay for the first four games of the regular season for violating the National Football League’s substance-abuse policy.
Goodson, 26, signed a three-year, $6.9 million contract with the Jets in March, two days after the team lost Shonn Greene as a free agent. Two months later, Goodson and a friend were arrested and charged with possession of marijuana and a handgun after a traffic stop in which Goodson was a passenger, CBS Sports reported, citing the New Jersey State Police.
Goodson hasn’t practiced with the Jets since the incident and rejoined the team yesterday. He’ll be eligible to return to the Jets’ active roster on Sept. 30, the day after their Week 4 game against the Tennessee Titans.
“I’ve been away from the team to take care of some important personal things,” Goodson said in a statement. “The time was helpful to me and, now that I am back, I am going to do everything I can to contribute to the team.”
The Jets said in a statement that Goodson will be permitted to attend meetings and do conditioning on an individual basis at their practice facility during the suspension, though he won’t be allowed to practice or play.
“While we welcome Mike back to the organization, we have had direct conversations to make our expectations very clear as we work together to help him move forward in a positive manner, both on and off the field,” the Jets said in an e-mailed statement.
Goodson is entering his fifth year in the NFL after playing for the Carolina Panthers for three seasons and the Oakland Raiders in 2012. He has gained 772 yards on 160 carries and caught 59 passes for 524 yards in his career.
Also yesterday, the NFL suspended Minnesota Vikings fullback Jerome Felton for the first three games of the regular season for violating the league’s substance-abuse policy.
Felton made the Pro Bowl last season after helping Adrian Peterson rush for a league-leading 2,097 yards. He’ll be eligible to return ahead of the Vikings’ Sept. 29 game against the Pittsburgh Steelers in London.