'Pacman' Suspended for Season

New York (AP) -- National Football League Commissioner Roger Goodell says it is a privilege, not a right, to represent the NFL. With that, he announced today the season-long suspension of Tennessee's Adam "Pacman" Jones and the eight-game suspension of Cincinnati's Chris Henry. The suspensions take affect this coming season.

Jones' off-field conduct has included ten incidents where he was interviewed by police. The most recent took place in Las Vegas during the NBA All-Star break.

Henry was arrested four times in a 14-month span, resulting in two benchings by Coach Marvin Lewis and a two-game league suspension. He was one of nine Bengals arrested in nine months.

The Tennessee Titans know they won't have cornerback Adam "Pacman" Jones for the upcoming season. That doesn't mean they have decided if they want him back once his suspension ends.
The talented cornerback has been a public relations problem from the moment the Titans made him the sixth overall pick and the first defensive player taken in the April 2005 draft.

Jones has alienated fans with his off-field problems - he has talked to police 10 different times with five arrests, which doesn't include the investigation into a Las Vegas strip club fight Feb. 19 that resulted in a triple-shooting.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announced on Tuesday that he is suspending Jones for the 2007 season. Cincinnati's Chris Henry was also suspended for eight games, after being arrested four times in a 14-month span.

The Titans haven't yet decided what to do when Jones returns.

"Unfortunately this decision does not end our deliberations about this player for our team," owner Bud Adams said in a statement, the only comment by the team on Tuesday.

"We will need assurances from the player on a number of issues before we are comfortable having him return to the team. Until we see a change in behavior through his actions and until he shows the ability to avoid controversy off the field, we will move forward with the possibility that he may not return to this team."

The Titans also want to know how the suspension without pay affects Jones' contract and the team. He is under contract through 2009 with guaranteed salaries through 2008, which the team said "can be dealt with by the team in due course."

Losing Jones hurts the Titans on the field.

The 5-foot-10 cornerback is their most gifted defensive player and one of the two best return men in franchise history. Jones, who led the NFL in average punt return yardage last season, tied Billy "White Shoes" Johnson's 1975 franchise record by returning three punts for touchdowns in 2006.

Jones had four interceptions last season, including two that keyed the Titans' comeback from a 21-0, fourth-quarter deficit against the New York Giants on Nov. 26. They won in overtime, 24-21.

Jones had the best return day in the NFL last season on Dec. 31 when he combined for 259 punt and kickoff return yards, including an 81-yard punt return for a touchdown. That ranked as the ninth-highest combined return total in the league over the past 10 years.

His attorney, Manny Arora, declined to comment. Jones' mother, Deborah said: "I just pray that this can be changed. This is not fair for him. It's just not fair."

Copyright 2007 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.


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