The Jets have announced cornerback Dimitri Patterson has been suspended indefinitely after missing Friday night's game against the Giants without permission from the team.
GM John Idzik: "[Patterson] will be suspended indefinitely, and that will allow us to gather more information to what led to his behavior."— New York Jets (@nyjets) August 25, 2014
There are a number of different angles to touch in this story. The first is this suspension. This move provides no closure and will have this story linger. It stands to reason that if the Jets want to keep Patterson around, the suspension would be better defined. If they wanted to get rid of him he would have been cut.
What I wonder is whether the Jets are looking into whether they could recoup some of Patterson's signing bonus because he went AWOL.
For his part Patterson denies his absence was unexcused.
"There’s no need for concern," Patterson told USA TODAY Sports before practicing Monday. "The reports about me going AWOL are totally false. I have my reason for missing those days. I’m not going to go into specifics, but I’ve discussed those reasons with the people I need to discuss them with. But as far as going AWOL, no, that’s totally false."
This wasn't a report, though. The general manager of the team voluntarily told everybody who would listen that Patterson was AWOL. Patterson is saying he was excused. The Jets are saying he wasn't. That seems to leave only two possibilities.
1. Patterson left the team without permission.
2. The Jets granted Patterson permission, but then decided to lie without any nudge from the media and create a major controversy with the media. In doing so people decided to put their reputations and careers on the line to hurt Dimitri Patterson, a player on whom the Jets were counting this year.
I won't speak definitively without all of the facts, but one of those seems a lot more likely than the other.
At any rate, we are starting to see some leaks to the press that will make it difficult for Patterson to return to the team.
Why did Dimitri Patterson skip Friday's game? I'm told he's not thrilled with Jets CB pecking order. His injuries dropped him on depth chart— Manish Mehta (@MMehtaNYDN) August 25, 2014
It's starting to feel like Dimitri Patterson has played his last game with the Jets before he even played his first game.