Unhappy Marshall Suspended By Broncos For Rest Of Preseason

By: AP Email
By: AP Email

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) -- Pro Bowl receiver Brandon Marshall, openly unhappy with the Denver Broncos, was suspended by the team for the rest of the preseason for what coach Josh McDaniels called "detrimental" conduct.

VIDEO OF MARSHALL'S ACTIONS
http://www.thedenverchannel.com/video/20590420/index.html

Marshall, who has brooded since demanding a trade and asking for a new contract, was informed of the suspension by McDaniels on Friday. The banishment runs through Sept. 5.

"We tried to handle this situation with Brandon as privately and professionally as we could throughout the entire process with he and his agent, Kennard McGuire," McDaniels said at a news conference. "This morning, we made the decision as an organization to go ahead and suspend Brandon. We'll look forward to having him back on Sept. 6th as we begin our preparations for Cincinnati" in a Sept. 13 opener.

McGuire didn't immediately return a phone call Friday. McGuire was out of the country until Monday.

McDaniels did not single out a specific episode but said the suspension resulted from a series of incidents, though some boorish antics during the team's practice Wednesday -- after he had been warned about such conduct that very morning -- seemed to be the final straw for the coach.

"His actions didn't really change after that warning. That leads us to today," McDaniels said.

During pre-practice warmups Wednesday, Marshall walked while the rest of the team ran. He punted a ball away instead of handing it to a ball boy and swatted a pass thrown to him. His actions were caught on video and broadcast by KMGH-TV.

Marshall told ESPN on Thursday night he wasn't trying to force a trade through insubordination but that frustration got the best of him.

Marshall, who had 206 receptions the past two seasons, is also upset with what he feels was the team's misdiagnosis of a hip injury that required offseason surgery. He pulled a hamstring during the first weekend of training camp and didn't return until a week ago.

Fellow wide receiver Brandon Stokley said he wasn't surprised the Broncos temporarily banished Marshall.

"Not really, not with his attitude and how he was acting," Stokley said. "Something had to be done. They made the decision. We're moving on, and hopefully in a few weeks, when he's back, he'll be ready to contribute."

Daniel Graham was concerned enough about Marshall's behavior at practice that the tight end said he talked to him about it several times. He said his main concern now is to make sure it doesn't become a distraction to the team.

"We've had a few conversations and Brandon, he's running his own ship," Graham said. "He's doing what he feels is best for him. Now, I'm just making sure, as a leader on this team, that we stay focused."

Marshall was held out of practice Thursday, apparently as the organization was formulating its disciplinary response.

"We're trying to handle this in a way that we can discourage this from happening," McDaniels said. "We didn't want to be in this situation. We never wanted it to get to this point. I'm sure they didn't either."

For all the tension and disagreement between the receiver and his coach and organization, McDaniels said he hasn't given up on the notion that the sides can work things out.

"I'm not sure necessarily if I think it will or I think it won't (work out)," McDaniels said. "I'm just hopeful that it will, because obviously he's a talented football player that we'd love to have pulling in the same direction as the other 79 guys that go out there and work their tail off.

"Obviously, there's a disagreement about some things. We're trying to make it right, to work through it."

McDaniels said Marshall didn't play against the Seahawks because he wasn't prepared to take the field.

Marshall also missed the team's exhibition opener against San Francisco two weeks ago because he was on trial in Atlanta, where he was acquitted of a misdemeanor battery charge. Prosecutors had accused him of beating his then-girlfriend.

Marshall hoped the acquittal would give him leverage for a new deal in Denver or elsewhere. He was angered when the Broncos prohibited teammates from saying they were happy for Marshall about the verdict.

That's when Marshall began spending more time between drills with the scout team and the defensive unit instead of his fellow offensive players.

The run-in with Marshall marks the second clash with a high-profile player since McDaniels, the former New England offensive coordinator, was hired in January to succeed the fired Mike Shanahan. McDaniels had a falling out with Pro Bowl quarterback Jay Cutler after he learned his new coach had discussed trading him in a foiled attempt to land his former New England quarterback, Matt Cassell, now with Kansas City.

Cutler subsequently forced a trade to the Chicago Bears, who are due in Sunday night, when the Broncos play their first home game under McDaniels.

McDaniels said his issues with Cutler and Marshall were nothing unusual, just part of being an NFL coach.

"We're not unique, we're not unique at all," McDaniels said. "Other coaches, other organizations have challenges in front of them and you deal with them as best you can."


Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
powered by Disqus
KOLO-TV 4850 Ampere Drive Reno, NV 89502
Gray Television, Inc. - Copyright © 2002-2014 - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 55891657