August 21, 2018 / 10:38 PM / 9 months ago

NFL suspends Ravens CB Smith four games

The NFL announced a four-game suspension for Baltimore Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith on Tuesday for violating the league’s personal-conduct policy.

Oct 26, 2017; Baltimore, MD, USA; Miami Dolphins wide receiver Kenny Stills (10) is unable to make a catch as Baltimore Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith (22) defends in the fourth quarter at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Patrick McDermott-USA TODAY Sports

Smith will sit out home games against the Buffalo Bills (Sept. 9) and Denver Broncos (Sept. 23), as well as two prime-time road games against AFC North rivals: A Thursday night visit to the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 2, and a Sunday night trip to the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 4. He will be eligible to rejoin the team Oct. 1, a day after the Steelers game.

Smith will forfeit about $2.12 million in salary.

The Athletic reported Monday that the Ravens were bracing for a multi-week suspension for Smith, who left the team over the weekend and met with league officials Monday as part of his appeal.

Smith’s violation of the personal-conduct policy has not been specified, but it could be connected to a child custody case between Smith and Micaela Sanchez, the mother of his first child. A story published in November by the Baltimore Sun included details from Sanchez that alleged domestic violence and drug use by Smith, which the Ravens veteran has denied.

The suspension continues a tumultuous several months for Smith, who was enjoying perhaps his best season in 2017 before suffering a torn Achilles in early December, weeks after the Baltimore Sun report emerged. Before the injury, Smith was appealing a four-game suspension for violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs. After getting hurt, he accepted that suspension and served it over the season’s final four games while on injured reserve.

Smith, who turned 30 last month, joined his Baltimore Ravens teammates on the field at mandatory minicamp in June, about two months ahead of schedule in his recovery, and he has been a full participant at training camp.

In seven seasons with Baltimore, Smith has played in all 16 games in just two seasons (2013 and 2015), missing four-plus games in every other year.

In 86 career games (68 starts), Smith has 11 career interceptions (two returned for touchdowns) and 254 tackles. The Ravens chose Smith with the No. 27 selection in the first round of the NFL draft in 2011.

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