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article imageNFL: Roethlisberger suspended 4 to 6 games

By Michael Bearak     Apr 21, 2010 in Sports
National Football League Commissioner Roger Goodell has gone ahead and suspended Pittsburgh Steeler's quarterback Ben Roethlisberger for violating the league's conduct policy.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced Wednesday that he has suspended Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger for a total of six games, but will consider dropping the suspension to four if the commissioner feels that the quarterback has made proper good progress. Goodell also ordered Big Ben to undergo a comprehensive behavioral evaluation.
It was a week ago that Georgia prosecutors announced that they did not have enough evidence to prosecute Ben Roethlisberger in a case involving a 20-year old college student who accused him of sexual assault. Nevertheless, the prosecutor made it clear that while he didn't have the evidence to push forward, he did not condone Roethlisberger's behavior stating that if Ben where his son he would tell him, "Grow up. Come on, you're supposed to stand for something.''
The commissioner's ruling means that Roethlisberger is barred from attending any Steeler's off-season activities until he completes his evaluation. He will be allowed to participate in training camp as well as pre-season games as long as he is cleared by both the evaluators and Goodell.
Art Rooney II, the Steelers' president, stated in a conference call, "I agree with and support the decision the commissioner made today."
In the meanwhile the team has also contacted a number of organizations with Top-10 draft picks to see if they are interested in trading for Roethlisberger. The team also signed Byron Leftwich to a one-year contract worth $2 million. Leftwich backed up Roethlisberger in 2008 when the Steelers won the Super Bowl.
Currently Roethlisberger is facing a civil suit by a Nevada hotel employee who claims he sexually assaulted her in 2008.
In his letter to the Steelers' quarterback commissioner Goodell was quoted as saying, “ In your six years in the NFL, you have first thrilled and now disappointed a great many people. I urge you to take full advantage of this opportunity to get your life and career back on track."
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