Last year, Jashon Cornell missed all of his rookie season with the Detroit Lions after rupturing his Achilles during the first week of training camp. His second year isn’t off to a great start, either, as the NFL announced on Thursday that Cornell has been suspended for the first three regular season games due to a violation of their substance abuse policy.
Cornell already released a response to the suspension via his Twitter account:
“I was informed today by the NFL that I would have to miss the first 3 games of the season. Last year after losing a dear friend of mine I made a mistake that was out of my character. I have owned it and worked on learning from it,” Cornell tweeted.
“Since then I have grown as a person and now a better man,” Cornell continued. “With that being said I apologize to the Lions organization and the fans. I have learned from my mishap.”
Cornell may still participate in offseason programs and practices—including preseason games—but once the regular season begins, he will not be eligible to return to the Lions until after their Week 3 game against the Baltimore Ravens. The suspension is also without pay.
A 2020 seventh-round pick, Cornell was drafted by the previous regime after a few solid seasons at Ohio State. Currently listed at 6-foot-3, 290 pounds, Cornell is likely in competition with the likes of rookie Levi Onwuzurike, veterans Da’Shawn Hand, Nick Williams, and Michael Brockers for a spot on the roster. Already an uphill battle for the 24-year-old defensive lineman, this suspension surely won’t help.
UPDATE: Justin Rogers of the Detroit News has more information on the incident that led to Cornell’s suspension:
On Jashon Cornell's suspension, he was convicted of a misdemeanor in March for fourth-degree driving while impaired in Minnesota. The incident occurred in July, 2020. It also resulted in 30 days of legal confinement and two years of probation.— Justin Rogers (@Justin_Rogers) June 3, 2021