Jameis Winston will like begin the 2018-2019 NFL season by serving a suspension, Yahoo Sports is reporting.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback is currently under investigation by the NFL for violating the league’s personal conduct policies. Specifically, the league is investigating an alleged incident from March, 2016, with an Uber driver in Arizona.
As of this writing, neither the NFL, nor the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have made any official announcements, but according to multiple reports, Wintson is expecting to be suspended for three games, to be served at the beginning of the upcoming season.
According to a report on NFL.com, NFL Network reporter Ian Rapoport broke the story, which was then reported by ESPN. However, Yahoo Sports reports that it was ESPN Tallahassee radio host Jeff Cameron who broke the story.
Regardless, the suspension, if or when it comes, will be the result of a March, 2016, incident.
As TMZ reported in 2017, the NFL opened an investigation into Winston following allegations that emerged from the Uber driver, who identified herself only as “Kate,” following the March, 2016, incident. The driver said that she picked up Winston from a bar in Scottsdale’s night-club district, and immediately began behaving in a way that she described as “out of control.”
He allegedly shouted homophobic slurs out the window of the vehicle before asking to go through the drive-through at a Mexican restaurant. While waiting, Kate says Winston “reached over and put his fingers on my crotch. It wasn’t accidental.”
Uber later stated that Winston has been banned from using the service forever.
At the time, Winston’s people issued a statement denying the incident.
“We categorically deny this allegation. It is our understanding the Uber driver was unable to identify the specific individual who allegedly touched this driver inappropriately. The only reason his name is being dragged in to this is that his Uber account was used to call the ride.”
Whether the incident happened or not, Winston was required, under the NFL’s collective bargaining agreement, to report the incident, something that he allegedly failed to do.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers, for their part, will have to rely on a second-string quarterback to fill Winston’s shoes until his suspension is completed. It looks like that job will fall to Ryan Fitzpatrick, who recently signed with the Bucs. Fitzpatrick played three games in 2017, during which he went 2-1, with with seven touchdowns and three interceptions.