The Patriots acted quick in releasing tight end Aaron Hernandez after his arrest on June 26. It appears they don’t have the same plan for cornerback Alfonzo Dennard.
Dennard was arrested on “suspicion of DUI” in the early morning of July 11. The Patriots quickly released a statement on the incident, expressing “extreme disappointment” over the arrest and vowing to find out more information before making any decision on his future, which they seem to have finally come to.
The Patriots have no plans to release Dennard as of now, according to Ben Volin of The Boston Globe. The team is, however, preparing for Dennard — who has now been arrested twice in the past 15 months — to be suspended by the NFL.
Dennard was arrested last April, just before the NFL draft, on charges of assaulting a police officer. He was sentenced to 30 days in prison and mandated two years on probation after being found guilty in Feb. 2013. The arrest, which is contested by Dennard’s camp, could lead to further jail time for Dennard, as the arrest may violation of his probation. He is due back in court in Lincoln, Neb., on July 31 for a probation hearing.
Punishment for a first DUI offense usually results in the loss of two game checks, per NFL policy, but, considering Dennard’s past, he could be in line for a two- or even four-game suspension by the league. He will likely meet with Roger Goodell for a conduct hearing after his Aug. 13 court date for the DUI citation.
The Patriots appear to be committed to Dennard, even given his legal issues. Bill Belichick, who wrote a letter on the cornerback’s behalf at his sentencing in April, seems to believe in his development both on the field and off.