On Monday, the Denver Broncos announced their disciplinary actions for both Director of Player Personnel Matt Russell and Director of Pro Personnel Tom Heckert. Both men have been suspended.
Russell is suspended indefinitely without pay stemming from his DUI arrest on July 6th, while Heckert is suspended one month without pay, due to his earlier June 11th DUI arrest.
According to NFL.com, the reason Russell’s suspension is more severe, comes from the severity of his actions. Russell was charged with a DUI in Colorado after hitting a parked police car at about 40 mph. He was also charged with having an open container of alcohol in his vehicle, failure to display proof of insurance and careless driving resulting in an injury.
In an interview, Vice President of Football Operations, John Elway said that it is important to look at each circumstance separately, and to be able to figure out what the correct punishment is for each one.
The timing of Russell’s incident also may have played a factor in his discipline. Russell knew about Heckert’s June arrest for driving under the influence and careless driving, because afterward, the Broncos met about it, but Russell still didn’t note the seriousness of it, and didn’t change his ways.
“It’s particularly disappointing that two members of my staff acted so irresponsibly. Simply put, it’s unacceptable and inexcusable,” Elway said in a statement.
Elway also wants to let the players know that they (the Broncos Organization) mean business in the front office, as well as with them.
“I think it’s important for the players to know that they’re not going to be held any different than anybody else. The front office is just as accountable as the players are going to be held, and that’s to make sure that we are consistent there.”