NFL upholds Burfict's season-long suspension
Justin Casterline / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The NFL has upheld Oakland Raiders linebacker Vontaze Burfict's season-long suspension for his head-to-head hit on Indianapolis Colts tight end Jack Doyle in Week 4, the league announced Wednesday.

Hall of Fame linebacker and NFL appeals officer Derrick Brooks heard Burfict's appeal. Raiders head coach Jon Gruden and quarterback Derek Carr both spoke on Burfict's behalf at the meeting, according to Josina Anderson of ESPN. Burfict's camp reportedly emphasized the fact he hadn't been flagged in over 190 plays leading up to the suspension.

Burfict's hit - which earned him an ejection - did not force Doyle from the game, and the tight end has not been evaluated for a concussion. But video recently surfaced showing a second dirty hit by Burfict in that game, a play which went unpenalized and may have affected the appeal process:

The Arizona State product has been fined in excess of $4 million for his reckless on-field behavior over the course of his eight-year career. Burfict, 29, had also been ejected once and suspended three times - twice for on-field conduct - for a total of 18 games prior to his season-long ban.

"Following each of your previous rule violations, you were warned by me and each of the jointly appointed appeal officers that future violations would result in escalated accountability measures," NFL vice president of football operations Jon Runyan wrote in his original suspension decision. "However, you have continued to flagrantly abuse rules designated to protect yourself and your opponents from unnecessary risk."

NFL upholds Burfict's season-long suspension
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