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Report: NFL Reinstates Oft-Suspended Raiders Linebacker

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The NFL announced on Monday that they have reinstated linebacker Vontaze Burfict. Burfict received a season-long suspension after his helmet-to-helmet hit on Colts tight end Jack Doyle in a Week 4 game back in September. 

That game was only his fourth for the Raiders. He spent his first seven seasons with the Bengals.

Since entering the league as an undrafted rookie in 2012, Burfict has been suspended four separate times and fined eight other times. 

September 2013 – Fined $31,000 for a pair of hits against the Packers, with one for a late hit and the other for a hit on a defenseless receiver. 

November 2013 – Fined $21,000 for an aggressive spear tackle against the Jets.

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October 2014 – Fined $25,000 for two aggressive ankle-twisting incidents against the Panthers!on tackles of Cam Newton and Greg Olsen.

December 2015 – Fined over $69,000 for a series of unsportsmanlike conduct penalties against the Steelers, including a late hit on Ben Roethlisberger.

January 2016 – Suspended three games for an excessive hit to a defenseless receiver against the Steelers. The hit was on Antonio Brown.

November 2016 – Fined over $12,000 for unsportsmanlike conduct in a game against the Bills after he purposely stepped on LeGarrette Blount’s leg following a touchdown.

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August 2017 – Suspended three games for hit on a defenseless receiver against the Chiefs.

October 2017 – Fined over $12,000 for kicking Steelers fullback Roosevelt Nix.

March 2018 – Suspended four games for violating the league’s Performance Enhancing Drug policy.

October 2018 – Fined $112,000 for two separate hits to head area against Steelers. One was on Antonio Brown and the other on James Conner. 

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December 2018 – Fined over $53,000 for lowering his helmet on a hit against the Broncos’ Andy Janovich.

September 2019 – Suspended 12 games (remainder of season) for helmet-to-helmet hit on Doyle.

It will be interesting to see if a team is willing to take a chance on the embattled impending free agent. While he did, after all, lead the league in tackles and was a Pro Bowl selection in 2013, his image and knack for dirty play will likely be too much for most teams. 

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