NFL Betting: Ranking the Losses of the League’s Suspended Players
When the 2015 NFL regular season gets underway this week, several teams and their NFL betting fans will be missing key players due to self-imposed suspensions for a variety of reasons. While some teams will be able to navigate through the losses of their suspended players rather easily, others could be affected more than even they realize at this point specially with all teams hoping to make a run at the Superbowl 50. Thanks to this fun-filled, yet expert, analysis on the top 10 suspensions for the 2015 season, you’re going to know which teams could struggle without their missing players and which ones will be able to weather the storm.
Le’Veon Bell – 2 Games (substance abuse)
Martavis Bryant – 4 Games (substance abuse)
Analysis: The loss of both players, especially Bell, hurt the Steelers a bit in their opener against the Patriots on Thursday night, but the good news is that the Steelers have a solid backup in former Panthers star DeAngelo Williams and arguably the best wide receiver in the game in Antonio Brown. Still, Martavis Bryant is an absolute ‘beast’ and the Steelers will miss him immensely for a month.
New England Patriots
RB LeGarrette Blount 1 Game 2014 Arrest
LB – Brandon Spikes 4 Games (Personal conduct policy)
Analysis: The Patriots missed LeGarrette Blount for their opener, but it is the loss of linebacker Brandon Spikes for four weeks that I believe will hurt the defending Super Bowl champions defensively for at least a month.
DE Greg Hardy 4 Games (personal conduct policy)
LB Rolando McClain 4 Games (substance abuse policy)
Tackle R.J. Dill 1 Game (PED Policy)
Analysis: Losing outstanding defensive end Greg Hardy is a big blow no matter what you think about the enigmatic former Carolina Panthers star. The loss of linebacker Rolando McClain will likely be equally as damaging if not more so, though the loss of R.J. Dill for one game won’t hurt the ‘Boys much.
San Diego Chargers
Antonio Gates – 4 Games (PED)
Analysis: The loss of the aging, but still productive Gates is a huge blow for a Chargers team looking to reach the postseason after consecutive 9-7 finishes the last two seasons.
The good news for the Chargers is that they have a quality backup in LaDarius Green, although I will say that Green underachieved in a big way last season.
Green Bay Packers
DT Letroy Guion 3 Games (substance abuse)
DE Datone Jones 1 Game (substance abuse)
Analysis: The losses of Guion and Jones will hurt the Packers for a while defensively, but they’ll have both players back before Week 4, so I guess the Pack will be able to weather the storm better than most teams would be able to deal with the loss of two of their top defensive linemen.
DE- Jermaine Cunningham-6 Games (Personal Conduct Policy)
Tackle Oday Aboushi 1 Game (Substance Abuse Policy)
DE – Sheldon Richardson 4 Games (Substance Abuse Policy)
Note: Richardson could face another suspension after pleading not guilty this past Monday to resisting arrest and traffic charges in connection with his arrest in July in Missouri.
Analysis: The Jets and their new-look defense will miss both, Richardson and Cunningham most, but I suspect the defensive genius of Todd Bowles – and lock-down routines of cornerbacks Darrelle Revis and Antonio Rodgers-Cromartie will be able to carry the Jets through these suspensions.
Safety LaRon Landry 10 Games – (PED Policy)
RB Ahmad Bradshaw 1 Game (Substance Abuse Policy)
Analysis: The Colts have one helluva’ secondary, but they are definitely going to miss elite safety LaRon Landry. Thankfully for Indy fans everywhere, he’ll be back just in time for the team’s stretch-run portion of the regular season.
Entire Season Losses
DE-LB Dion Jordan (substance abuse, season)
Analysis: The loss of Jordan is pretty big…but not as big as the signing of defensive tackle extraordinaire Ndamukong Suh. Alongside Cameron Wake, Miami’s front seven should be hellacious this season.
LB Daryl Washington (substance abuse, indefinite)
Analysis: Arizona’s defense looked fantastic in the preseason, but the loss of Washington will hurt them as far as depth is concerned.
WR Josh Gordon (substance abuse, indefinite)
Analysis: The Browns need wide receivers in the worst damn way. It’s too bad that the gifted Josh Gordon refuses to grow up – and actually act like a real adult!