By Tarik El-Bashir
Tanard Jackson’s indefinite suspension for violating the NFL’s drug policy disappointed Mike Shanahan and caught the Redskins off guard, the coach said Saturday.
“To be honest with you, usually the organization is the last to know,” Shanahan said. “You’ve got to go through the league office. They’re very secretive. They don’t give you a whole lot of details.”
Jackson, a safety who had put himself in position to secure a spot on Washington’s 53-man roster, was suspended for at least a year after failing his third drug test since 2009, the NFL announced Friday. The 27-year-old Silver Spring native won’t be eligible for reinstatement until next year.
“I was disappointed because I really like the guy,” Shanahan said. “I like who he is. I like the way he worked. The guy’s never been arrested in his life. I’m just really disappointed for him. Obviously he’s made some mistakes, but I’m just disappointed for the guy.”
Shanahan also acknowledged that Jackson’s absence from practice Monday was indeed related to the forthcoming suspension. The Redskins, however, did not learn of Jackson’s suspension until Friday, which forced the front office to adjust last minute. Jackson’s vacated spot likely was filled by rookie Jordan Bernstine.
“One guy is going to make your football team [then] obviously he’s not and he’s off your roster,” Shanahan said. “You’ve got another spot, so you adjust.”
Jackson has been placed on the reserve/suspended list.