CLEVELAND — Cleveland Browns wide receiver Davion Davis has been suspended without pay for the first two games of the regular season for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy, the team announced in a statement Tuesday.
Davis was arrested in St. Paul, Minnesota on Oct. 26, 2019 when he was recorded speeding and had alcohol in his system, Davis' attorney David Valentini said.
At the time, he was a rookie on the Vikings' active roster.
Davis originally pleaded not guilty to careless driving and two charges of driving while intoxicated, but later changed his plea for the careless driving charge to guilty. His two charges for driving while intoxicated were dismissed in December when he pleaded guilty to careless driving.
Outside of the state of Minnesota, the careless driving charge would not carry an alcohol conviction, but under state specifications it does, Valentini said. Davis served probation time for the incident.
Per the NFL's protocols, the NFL commissioner will review any situation in which a player is convicted of or admits to a violation of the law relating to the use of alcohol. After the review, the league may impose a fine, suspension, or other appropriate discipline.
The league handed down the suspension after Davis' case was resolved in December 2020, which was originally a three-game suspension. After Davis appealed it, and because his case predated the league's new Collective Bargaining Agreement, the league came back with the two-game suspension. With COVID-19 shutting down courts in Minnesota and Davis' case not being deemed a priority, the case remained opened for some time, causing the delay in the discipline.
Because Davis was not on an NFL roster at the time of the resolution of the case, no announcement of the punishment was made.
Davis signed with the Browns on July 31 and the NFL announced the discipline 25 days later.
While Davis is suspended for the first two games of the regular season, he will be able to participate in the remainder of the preseason.
Davis will be eligible to return to the Browns active roster on Monday, Sept. 20 following the team's Week 2 game against the Houston Texans.
The Browns have until 4 p.m on Aug. 31 to narrow the roster down to 53 players, but during final roster cuts, suspended players are moved to the Reserve/Suspended list, meaning Davis would not count against the 53-man roster limit.
Camryn Justice is a digital content producer at News 5 Cleveland. Follow her on Twitter @camijustice.
Download the News 5 Cleveland app now for more stories from us, plus alerts on major news, the latest weather forecast, traffic information and much more. Download now on your Apple device here, and your Android device here.