NFLPA director Smith asks why Elliott investigation took so long

Eric Hartline / USA TODAY Sports

The NFL came down hard on Ezekiel Elliott on Friday, suspending the Dallas Cowboys running back six games for what the league deemed "substantial and persuasive" evidence that he was physically violent with a former girlfriend.

The league had been investigating the matter since July 2016 and it has NFL Players Association executive director DeMaurice Smith asking what took so long.

"I do know that the Ezekiel Elliott investigation now has to be over a year old. I know that it resulted in a 165-page report and probably hundreds of thousands of billable hours by league personnel. I just have a hard time understanding how come an investigation takes a year, results in a 165-page report, and takes so long and so many person hours," Smith said to The MMQB's Albert Breer, according to SI's Chris Chavez.

"As a homicide prosecutor and violent crimes prosecutor, I had to try a violent offender or a murderer 100 days after arrest or the person goes free. I know there's a couple of prosecutors that are working with the league on these personal conduct issues but I gotta tell ya there's whole group of prosecutors and law enforcement folks laughing at them going, 'Why does it take so long?'"

Elliott also provided a statement Friday evening and his attorneys have stated he plans to appeal the suspension.

NFLPA director Smith asks why Elliott investigation took so long
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