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Bengals RB Walton facing charges for 3rd time

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Cincinnati Bengals running back Mark Walton surrendered to police on Thursday and is facing four charges, including a felony charge of carrying a concealed weapon, following Walton’s third off-the-field incident this year.

According to court records, he is facing misdemeanor charges of resisting an officer without violence, marijuana possession and reckless driving, in addition to the felony charge. All charges are related to an incident that occurred in Miami on March 12.

The Miami Herald reported that police officers attempted to pull Walton’s car over because it was speeding and weaving in and out of traffic. Walton pulled the car over in front of a house and officers ordered him to the ground as he was exiting the car. Walton began to run and was subdued with a stun gun, but he dislodged the prongs and escaped, according to the report.

Officers reportedly searched the car and found 14 grams of marijuana and a legally purchased 9 mm carbine rifle with fully loaded clips.

This is the third incident for Walton in 2019. He was charged with battery on Feb. 16. In that incident, Walton allegedly grabbed a phone from his neighbor during an argument in a parking garage. His hearing for that charge is currently scheduled for April 8.

He was also charged with misdemeanor possession of marijuana on Jan. 16. He has a hearing scheduled for June 5 for that charge.

Walton was also arrested in 2016 on drunk driving charges when he was 19. Those charges were later dropped, and Walton’s attorney told reporters that Walton was the victim of a setup.

Walton, 22, was selected by the Bengals out of Miami in the fourth round of the 2018 draft. Walton played mostly on special teams and carried the ball only 14 times in 2018, rushing for 34 yards, an average of 2.4 yards-per-carry.

A statement from the Bengals said the team is currently gathering information and offered no further comment at this time.

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NFLPA issues ‘work stoppage guide’ to players

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As CBA negotiations between the NFL and the NFLPA continue to make little progress, the NFLPA has issued a “work stoppage guide” to its players to help them prepare in case of a strike or lockout following the 2020 season.

Sources on both sides of the negotiations continue to insist a work stoppage is unlikely. But the NFLPA has said all along that its mission is to “negotiate for the best while preparing for the worst.” So while the current CBA doesn’t expire until March 2021, the players’ union is trying to make sure its members are prepared in case negotiations go sideways.

Much of the “work stoppage guide”, a copy of which was obtained by ESPN, is focused on helping players manage their money in advance of — or in case of — a strike or lockout. The specific suggestions include:

  • Save at least half of each check, if not more. If your current expenses are too high to save this much, you should look at ways to change your spending habits and reduce financial commitments.

  • Try cooking at home instead of eating out as much.

  • Designate one day a week as “no spending day.”

  • Take care of major home repairs now.

  • If you’re in the market for a new home, consider renting instead of buying for now.

  • Find renters for your unoccupied homes or bedrooms.

  • Consider selling a car you have not driven in the past six months.

  • Avoid signing a long-term lease on any rental property that you rarely use.

  • Learn to say “no” — or at least, “not now” — to friends and family asking for money.

  • Consider selling clothes you have not worn in a year on Poshmark, Thred-up or Tradesy.

Other parts of the guide address specifics of what the rules might be during a work stoppage, in terms of access to team facilities (none), whether the league would conduct a draft (they did in 2011 while players were locked out) and whether players would still be subject to drug testing during a work stoppage (they don’t know).

Players and owners have conducted a handful of negotiating sessions this summer, and commissioner Roger Goodell has said publicly that the league would like a new CBA in place before the start of the 2019 season. But sources say little progress has been made in talks so far, as the main issue remains the revenue split between players and owners. Currently, the players’ share of all league revenue may not fall below 47 percent in a given year, and the players want that figure to go up.

More negotiating sessions between players and owners are tentatively scheduled for next week, sources say, though the key word there is “tentatively.” Talks between staff members for each side have been ongoing, and the two sides are likely to decide in the coming days whether there’s likely to be enough progress to warrant more formal negotiating sessions next week.

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Panthers’ Cox cited for speeding, marijuana

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BESSEMER CITY, N.C. — The North Carolina Highway Patrol cited Carolina Panthers defensive end Bryan Cox Jr. for speeding, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia on Wednesday, the final day of the team’s training camp.

Sergeant Christopher Knox of the North Carolina Department of Public Safety said troopers pulled over the 25-year-old Cox on Interstate 85 northbound near Bessemer City for driving 90 mph in a 65 mph zone in a 2015 Nissan. Cox was cited for possessing less than a half-ounce of marijuana. He has an Oct. 14 court date.

The incident came about an hour after the Panthers broke camp at Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina, and players began returning to Charlotte, North Carolina.

The Panthers released a statement Wednesday night, saying, “The club is aware that Bryan Cox Jr. was cited by law enforcement today. We are gathering information and have been in contact with the NFL and Bryan. We will have no further comment at this time.”

Cox has been with the Panthers since 2017. He is the son of Bryan Cox, who played 12 seasons in the NFL and was named All-Pro three times.

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Beckham Jr. dealing with hip injury

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This story has been corrected. Read below.

Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. sat out the team portion of a joint practice with the Indianapolis Colts on Wednesday with what coach Freddie Kitchens termed a minor injury.

Sources told ESPN’s Dan Graziano that Beckham is dealing with a hip injury, but he could participate in team drills against the Colts on Thursday. Beckham took part in individual drills on Wednesday.

The Browns are in Westfield, Indiana, for two joint practices with the Colts before their preseason game on Saturday.

Beckham did not play in Cleveland’s first preseason game against the Washington Redskins.

An August 14 story had sources incorrectly describing Beckham Jr.’s injury as a hip pointer. Later, sources said it is simply a hip injury and not a pointer.

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