The Dallas Cowboys are facing a brand-new controversy on Sunday morning.
According to multiple reports, running back Joseph Randle is facing a one or two-game suspension after violating the league’s personal-conduct policy due to an offseason arrest.
Randle is not with the team this weekend as the Cowboys face off against the Seattle Seahawks in a must-win matchup. Dallas has lost four straight games. Here’s what you need to know:
1. Randle Was Deemed to Have Violated the Personal-Conduct Policy
According to NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport, Randle received news that he had violated the NFL’s personal conduct policy for his arrest in Wichita, Kansas during the offseason.
This February, Randle was arrested for unlawful possession of marijuana. Per Wichita police, officers arrived at Randle’s hotel after receiving a call for domestic violence with a weapon. The Cowboys running back was found with a 22-year-old woman at the hotel and police observed marijuana in the room.
The charges were eventually dropped, but the league kept investigation. He faces a one or two-game suspension and the NFL says the main offense was firearm related.
Randle left the Cowboys facility after learning of the report on Wednesday and has not yet returned.
2. Randle Was Also Arrested for Shoplifting in 2014
February’s offseason incident was not Randle’s first brush with the law. He made headlines in October, 2014 when he was arrested for shoplifting at a Frico, Texas mall. Randle was reportedly trying to steal Polo underwear and a tester bottle of Gucci Guilty Black cologne.
Randle’s arrest report showed that the running back was cooperative with police although he did say he “should have just kept walking to his car if he knew he would be arrested.” Randle publicly apologized two days after the event, saying:
It’s the biggest mistake I’ve ever made in my life. I’ve never gotten in any kind of trouble in my whole life. This is just something I’ll have to learn from and move forward.
3. Jerry Jones Said He Was Reviewing Randle’s Case
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones spoke with KRLD-FM in Dallas Forth-Worth on Friday, two days after Randle left the team’s facility, and said that he was currently reviewing the running back’s case.
He added, however, that it was premature to talk about his roster spot going forward. According to Jones, Randle is excused from the team and will be absent from Sunday’s game against the Seattle Seahawks as he deals with a personal issue.
There has been no official word as to when Randle will return.
4. Randle Called Irving Police to Perform a Well-Being Check on His Girlfriend
Randle reportedly placed a call to area police on Wednesday afternoon, just hours before news of his potential punishment broke, asking authorities to perform a well-being check on his girlfriend at their home.
Irving Police Public Information Officer James McLellan said officers arrived at the home at 12:41 p.m. CT and found nothing wrong at the residence. Randle’s girlfriend was reportedly at school and there was no indication of any wrong-doing.
Randle told police he was paranoid, which is why he made the call in the first place.
5. The Cowboys Are Reportedly Concerned for Randle’s Well-Being
Randle was reportedly distraught at the Cowboy’s facility on Wednesday when he learned of the NFL’s moves and Dallas’ decision to promote Darren McFadden as the team’s new starters.
According to Ian Rapoport, team officials are “concerned about his personal and mental well-being.”
Dallas head coach Jason Garrett didn’t go into much detail on the situation earlier this week, saying Randle was dealing with a personal issue and wouldn’t practice due to a strained oblique.
Randle carried the ball 76 times this season for 315 yards and four touchdowns.