Cowboys' David Irving Suspended Indefinitely for Substance-Abuse Violation

Megan ArmstrongContributor IMarch 1, 2019

LANDOVER, MD - OCTOBER 21: David Irving #95 of the Dallas Cowboys looks on during the game against the Washington Redskins at FedExField on October 21, 2018 in Landover, Maryland. The Redskins won 20-17. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Dallas Cowboys defensive tackle David Irving has been suspended indefinitely for violating the NFL's Policy and Program for Substances of Abuse, NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported Friday.

Irving went undrafted in 2015 but has suited up for Dallas the past four seasons. However, 2019 will be the third season in a row that Irving begins on the suspended list. The 25-year-old was suspended for the first four games of the 2018 season for violating the league's substance-abuse policy and the first four games of the 2017 season for a PED violation.

In 37 career games, Irving has 56 total tackles and 12.5 sacks. 

However, Irving only appeared in two games for the Cowboys last season, and the franchise's commitment to the embattled free-agent defensive lineman reportedly had been waning. 

Earlier this week—before Irving's suspension was made official by the NFL—ESPN's Adam Schefter appeared on Golic and Wingo and said Dallas would not bring back Irving, who is set to become a free agent once the new league year begins:

"It seems like that's been very clear from Dallas' standpoint that they'll let him get to the market, and again, when you have questions like this hanging over you, you know, you wonder if any team is gonna go sign a guy like that. ... When we see the league year open on March 13 ... there are a lot players that are gonna be signed out of the box.

"David Irving's not gonna be in the group right now. It's just not gonna happen that way with some of these questions surrounding him going forward."

Irving himself vaguely addressed his pending suspension with an Instagram post on Monday night (h/t USA Today):

"I'm in the NFL because I'm great at what I do. I'm not in the NFL because I'm an Eagle Scout, or the perfect model citizen. I don't put on a mask or kiss ass to be where I am. I'm here on natural ability. This is God's plan. Not mine. Trust me, I'm adjusting to it as well.

"Once I step on the field and stop performing, THEN we have a problem...So does anyone have anything to say about my play?"

Irving has since made his Instagram account private. 

Irving is the second Dallas defensive lineman to be suspended for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy this week; defensive end Randy Gregory was suspended indefinitely on Tuesday.

Gregory, like Irving, is no stranger to suspensions. This is the fourth suspension for the 26-year-old, and all of them were a result of violating the league's substance-abuse policy. He has been suspended for a total of 30 NFL games while playing in only 28 since being drafted in 2015.

Head coach Jason Garrett confirmed on Wednesday that the team will continue to support Gregory during his suspension. However, the future is a bit more uncertain for Irving.