The Bengals released the following statement regarding LB Vontaze Burfict’s five-game suspension:
“The Bengals are aware of the NFL’s letter to Vontaze regarding a play in last weekend’s game. The film shows that the hit was legal, that Vontaze engaged his opponent from the front, and that contact was shoulder-to-chest. The Club will support Vontaze in the appeal process.”
- According to Schefter, Burfict is currently appealing the five-game suspension and has a hearing scheduled for next week.
Here’s a video of the hit in question:
If anyone hasn't seen the hit pic.twitter.com/6s5DBLifPc
— Laces Or Faces (@LacesOrFaces) August 28, 2017
Burfict is a repeat offender and has been suspended multiple times in the past, including a three-game ban at the start of last year for numerous violations of player safety rules.
Should the suspension, it would cost Burfict $882,353 in lost base-salary game checks.
Burfict, 26, wound up signing on with the Bengals as an undrafted free agent out of Arizona State back in 2012. He’s currently in the final year of his four-year, $20 million contract and set to make a base salary of $3.75 million for the 2017 season.
Burfict is in line to be an unrestricted free agent next year.
In 2016, Burfict appeared in 11 games for the Bengals and recorded 101 tackles, two sacks, two interceptions, a forced fumble and eight pass defenses. Pro Football Focus had him rated as the No. 6 linebacker out of 86 qualifying players.