Patriots' Daniel Ekuale Suspended for 1st 2 Games of 2022 NFL Season

Doric SamJune 13, 2022

FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS - OCTOBER 24: Daniel Ekuale #95 of the New England Patriots rushes against Greg Van Roten #62 of the New York Jets during the game at Gillette Stadium on October 24, 2021 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

New England Patriots defensive tackle Daniel Ekuale reportedly is set to be sidelined to start the 2022 season.

ESPN's Field Yates reported Monday that Ekuale has been suspended for the first two games of the year for an undisclosed reason.

Ekuale is a rotational player on the interior of the defensive line for the Patriots. According to ESPN's Mike Reiss, Ekuale earned seven elevations from New England's practice squad throughout the 2021 season, the highest on the team. The Patriots signed the 28-year-old to a reserves/future contract worth a maximum of $1.1 million in January.

After going undrafted out of Washington State in 2018, Ekuale signed with the Cleveland Browns and was eventually signed to the team's practice squad. That December, he received a four-game suspension for violating the NFL's performance-enhancing substance policy.

The Browns removed Ekuale from the practice squad but brought him back in January 2019, and he made the 53-man roster. Ekuale appeared in seven games for Cleveland that season, recording four total tackles. He signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars for the 2020 season and appeared in nine games with five starts, registering 13 total tackles and a sack.

In the seven games he appeared in last year, Ekuale was on the field for 99 defensive snaps and finished with five tackles and two sacks.

Ekuale was likely set for more action in his second year in New England, but this suspension obviously hurts his reputation with the team.