During the Green Bay Packers’ playoff run in January, we learned that one member of the team was facing charges associated with marijuana possession: wide receiver Geronimo Allison.
The Packers’ #4 receiver down the stretch, Allison made a splash late in the season, totaling over 150 receiving yards during the Packers’ final two regular season games and adding five catches for 65 yards in the playoffs.
Then, in April, news broke that Allison had reached a deal to settle his charges and avoid further criminal prosecution. The deal came with a small fine and a commitment to perform community service. Of course, the NFL still takes a dim view of drug offenses, regardless of the legal ramifications, and it was widely expected that some sort of penalty would come down on Allison.
Today, we learned found out what Allison’s discipline will be from the NFL, as announced in a press release from the league:
Geronimo Allison of the Green Bay Packers has been suspended without pay for the first game of the 2017 regular season for violating the NFL Policy and Program for Substances of Abuse.
Allison will be eligible to return to the Packers’ active roster on Monday, September 11 following the team’s September 10 game against the Seattle Seahawks.
Allison is eligible to participate in all preseason practices and games.
That one game will be served in week one against the Seattle Seahawks, during which Allison will be placed on the Reserve/Suspended list. He will be eligible to return the following week against the Atlanta Falcons.
From a roster perspective, this means that the Packers will have an extra week to decide what to do at the wide receiver position. Allison appears likely to make the 53-man roster, so his spot could feasibly go to a seventh wideout for the first game, after which the Packers could release whichever player ends up at the bottom of the depth chart to bring Allison back.
Of course, the team could also elect to play with five wideouts for week one, keeping a player at a different position instead.
Defensive tackle Letroy Guion is also suspended to start the season, serving four games for a violation of the league’s substance abuse policy.