If you were wondering about Jerome Simpson for your 53-man roster projections, wonder no more. The San Francisco 49ers announced that Simpson has been suspended six games by the NFL for violating the substance abuse policy. He can continue practicing and playing in the preseason, but he will be moved to the Reserve/Suspended list when the team makes final roster cuts. He is eligible to return October 19.
The 49ers appear to have known this was a possibility. Trent Baalke issued this statement (the 49ers.com link is deleted, but the team did not delete their tweet, so it seems to be a thing):
Trent Baalke’s statement on Jerome Simpson’s suspension. pic.twitter.com/cHmvYfcrZ8— Chris Biderman (@ChrisBiderman) August 18, 2015
I believe the suspension is related to his July 2014 arrest for marijuana possession and driving with an open container. The arrest came shortly before he served a three-game suspension to start the 2014 season due to a prior marijuana incident. I can't find resolution to the marijuana/open container arrest, but the NFL seems to have imposed their own discipline. Given his two previous suspensions, this is not a surprising development.
He was a strong bubble option at wide receiver, but this makes it even more likely that DeAndrew White makes the team. The 49ers likely will go with five wide receivers. Anquan Boldin and Torrey Smith will start, and then Bruce Ellington, Quinton Patton and DeAndrew White seem like the strongest candidates as reserves.