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New England Patriots: Alfonzo Dennard Sentenced to Jail

Dennard Will Have to Serve Jail Time but it Won' Cause Him to Miss Any Games

Yahoo Contributor Network

COMMENTARY| New England Patriots cornerback Alfonzo Dennard received bad news just before the holidays.

According to Lori Pilger of the Lincoln Journal Star, Nebraska judge Stephanie Lacy sentenced the 24-year-old defensive back for violating the terms of the probation he had received for assaulting a police officer in Lincoln, Nebraska in April, 2012.

WEEI's Mike Petraglia described how Dennard had originally been sentenced to two years probation 100 hours of community service and a suspended 30-day jail sentence. However, he was arrested in July for a suspected DUI and later acknowledged in court he violated those terms.

At his most recent sentencing, he was given an additional 30 days in jail and an extra year of probation. Facing up to five years in jail and a $10,000 fine, things could have come out much worse for him.

The judge could have immediately ordered Dennard to immediately start serving his 60-day sentence (which could be reduced to 38 days with good behavior). Instead, she delayed it until March 31, 2014, which should have minimal impact on his football career.

A no-alcohol provision was tacked on to Dennard's current conditions, and the judge warned him as he left the courtroom, "I want you to know this is your last chance," according to a tweet by Pilger.

Petraglia wrote that Dennard has already completed 65 hours of his community service through a variety of activities, even though he has two years to fulfill the requirement.

Dennard still has one more hurdle to overcome, as he is scheduled to be sentenced for the DUI on Friday.

A 2012 seventh-round draft choice out of the University of Nebraska, he has blossomed into a dependable starter this season, accumulating 35 tackles and an interception in 10 games.

Although he has missed two of the past three games with a knee injury, as of right now he will be able to finish the season with the Patriots as soon as he is healthy enough to get back on the field.

It remains to be seen if the NFL will levy any additional punishment, but for the moment, it appears Dennard is in a best-case scenario given how things could have gone-at least for now.

In addition to the Yahoo Contributor Network, Andrew Martin has written extensively for Bleacher Report and a number of print publications and websites on the topics of history and sports (particularly the Boston Red Sox and the New England Patriots). He also produces his own blog and has appeared on various sports talk shows and podcasts.

You can also follow Andrew on Twitter: @HistorianAndrew.

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