COMMENTARY | The Baltimore Ravens suffered another blow to their roster Friday afternoon, as second-year cornerback Asa Jackson was suspended by the NFL eight games for violating the league's performance-enhancing drugs policy.
In 2012 -- his rookie season -- Jackson was issued a four-game suspension for testing positive for Adderall, and his second failed test in as many years led to the eight-game suspension.
He will be eligible to return after the Ravens' game against the Cleveland Browns on November 3.
But will Jackson even still be on the team by then? He shouldn't be.
The Ravens have traditionally been an organization of class and model actions, with few players with off-field problems shedding a negative light on the team.
Suspensions have never been a problem for the Ravens, and they shouldn't let Jackson be the start of a trend on the team. The Ravens already had one roster move go wrong this season when they signed linebacker Rolando McClain to a one-year deal, only to see him retire him not long after.
While Jackson wasn't arrested on either occasion that led to a suspension, the Ravens should still admit wrongdoing in drafting him and move on. Jackson is one of two players from the 2012 draft class to be issued a suspension already, with safety Christian Thompson set to serve a four-game suspension to begin the regular season.
Two suspensions from one draft class is more than enough. While Thompson may just be a one-time case, Jackson proved on Friday that he is a repeat offender, which doesn't give him much leeway in vying for a roster spot.
The 2012 fifth-round pick played sparingly during his rookie campaign, and entering this season there was a slim chance his role would increase defensively. He showed some value on special teams, but finding a replacement on special teams is not a difficult process.
Jackson was a fringe 53-man roster player to begin with, and now he does not deserve a roster spot this year or any other year in Baltimore.
It's time for the Ravens to make a statement and cut Jackson and simply move on.
He would have been nothing more than the fifth cornerback on the team this season, and losing him won't negatively affect the team. The Ravens have plenty of cornerback depth, and seventh-round pick Marc Anthony is capable of taking over for Jackson.
A player of Jackson's caliber isn't worth the headaches he brings to the organization, and cutting ties with him would be in the best interest of both parties.
Kyle Casey is a sports writer living in Baltimore, Md. He maintains his own football site, End Zone Report, and is the editor of Cat Crave.
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