Blog Entry

Cedric Benson: 'I'm playing' against Bills Sunday

Posted on: September 28, 2011 12:33 pm
Edited on: September 28, 2011 12:38 pm
 
Cedric Benson hasn't yet been suspended. (US PRESSWIRE)
Posted by Ryan Wilson

Cedric Benson is reportedly facing a three-game suspension for violating the NFL's player-conduct policy during the lockout. But when the Bengals face the Bills this weekend, Benson will be on the field.

"I'm playing," he said according to the Bengals' official Twitter feed. And head coach Marvin Lewis confirms it

While there hasn't been an announcement from the NFL regarding Benson's suspension, he met with the league Tuesday as part of his appeal hearing. An explanation of the process from NFL spokesman Greg Aiello (sent to PFT Wednesday morning) sheds some light on the process.

“A player is not suspended until he has had an opportunity to file an appeal and for that appeal to be heard and adjudicated,” Aiello said via email.

There doesn't appear to be a timetable on when a ruling will come, either. The biggest issue is that Benson, who is apart of the NFL Players Association, was unaware that the NFLPA and the NFL had agreed to punish some of the players who had violated the league's conduct policy during the lockout. In fact, Benson last week filed a charge of unfair labor practice against the NFLPA.

CBSSports.com colleague Josh Katzowitz wrote Sunday, "Benson is arguing to the National Labor Relations Board that the NFLPA wasn’t a union during the lockout -- the NFL and a group of retired players all have made the same claim in various lawsuits because, in fact, the NFLPA decertified before the lockout began and took great pains to announce that it no longer was a union -- and Benson also says that he wasn’t an employee of any team during the lockout. Benson reasons that he shouldn't be suspended for actions that occurred when he wasn't an employee of the NFL or of the Bengals."

Benson isn't alone. Teammate Andrew Whitworth agrees.

"The union let those eight guys down,” Whitworth said, via CBSSports.com Rapid Reporter Paul Dehner. “I don’t feel like that was fair. To me, if I was told that was a make or break, I would've said that’s a make or break deal that we were going to sell out eight guys to have an agreement."

As PFT.com's Mike Florio pointed out Wednesday, "The biggest question seems to be whether the NFL has the power to impose discipline against players for off-field conduct occurring during the lockout. In Benson’s case, the situation is complicated by the fact that he wasn’t even employed by an NFL team, since his prior contract with the Bengals had expired."

Who knows how long it will take to sort this out, bur for now, Benson will keep playing.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, subscribe to our NFL newsletter, and while you're add it, add our RSS Feed.
Comments

Since: May 11, 2007
Posted on: September 28, 2011 7:27 pm
 

Cedric Benson: 'I'm playing' against Bills Sunday

"Benson wasen`t employed by the league during the lock-out"

Niether was Pryor, but he was given a 5 game suspension, so he could enter the league... That being said... What`s your point?



Since: Sep 28, 2011
Posted on: September 28, 2011 7:10 pm
 

Cedric Benson: 'I'm playing' against Bills Sunday

Philsphan4321:

Read the whole article, or at least the last couple of sentences. His contract had expired, so he in fact was NOT under an NFL contract. Roger "Goody Two Shoes" wants to have his cake and eat it too. I'm sure he'll have plenty of suspension opportunities in the future (probably even with Benson), but they should let this one go. And shame on the NFLPA for selling out Benson & the other 7 players on this issue.



Since: Feb 8, 2009
Posted on: September 28, 2011 7:10 pm
 

Cedric Benson: 'I'm playing' against Bills Sunday

If you get hired by a company after committing a crime, does the company have the right to dismiss you if you go to jail for a week while employed by them.  I know you committed the crime before working there, but how does the company feel about having a convict roaming their halls and representing their business. 



Since: Oct 15, 2007
Posted on: September 28, 2011 7:03 pm
 

Cedric Benson: 'I'm playing' against Bills Sunday

But that's just it, Benson wasn't under contract with the Bengals or anyone else during the lockout. This is like your employer deciding to dock your pay because of something that happened before you were hired. And it isn't like the Bengals and the NFL didn't know about it after the lockout. If they didn't like the fact that Benson had been arrested during the lockout, then don't sign him. Its as simple as that.



Since: Aug 11, 2011
Posted on: September 28, 2011 7:02 pm
 

Cedric Benson: 'I'm playing' against Bills Sunday

Not fair to punish Benson and let others off especially when he wasn't employed and the Union was disbanded. Part of the unintended consequences of the lockout.



Since: Feb 8, 2009
Posted on: September 28, 2011 6:44 pm
 

Cedric Benson: 'I'm playing' against Bills Sunday

Ben Roethlisberger was suspended by the NFL and he was not even charged with a crime.  His suspension was because his alleged actions reflect a negative image for the NFL.  Although Benson was not under contract in a league without a union, he did go to jail while under an NFL contract.  If the league can suspend a player for hurting the image of the league, why is it unreasonable to suspend Benson for going to jail while under an NFL contract?  Was that good for the league's image?  Besides, he is a multiple offender of the league's conduct rules and has been previously suspended.  



Since: Aug 29, 2006
Posted on: September 28, 2011 6:41 pm
 

Cedric Benson: 'I'm playing' against Bills Sunday

MrWormtown, you and I quote as I am lmao "I believe he's not smart enough to argue intelligently enough", way to jump in on that. I award you no point and may God have mercy on your soul.  I am pretty sure this man has a lawyer but thanks for your assumption... During the lockout the players were no longer employed by the NFL, so the NFL cannot sanction disciplinary actions during that time against private citizens not affiliated with the NFL.


™CENATION-HLR™
Since: Jul 28, 2011
Posted on: September 28, 2011 6:40 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator




Since: Oct 4, 2010
Posted on: September 28, 2011 6:18 pm
 

Cedric Benson: 'I'm playing' against Bills Sunday

you sound grumpy, go take a knap.



Since: Jul 29, 2011
Posted on: September 28, 2011 6:14 pm
 

Cedric Benson: 'I'm playing' against Bills Sunday

This will make a great argument!  However, I feel that Benson is a bad apple but he technically wasn't employed during the lockout.  Of course the statement that Benson was arguing the fact where I believe he's not smart enough to argue intelligently enough to get his point across so I believe that his attorneys have probably spoken for him.  During the NFL lockout all bets should have been off - players should have been disciplined enough not to get into trouble.  But people are people and mistakes happen especially if your hanging around with the wrong crowd.  So he should get a pass but should be tested again.



The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com