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Will Jaguars Fowler face NFL discipline after no contest plea to battery?

Florida Football Insiders

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David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

It was a season where an awful lot went right for the Jaguars. However, an off season negative from last summer may affect DE Dante Fowler for the 2018 season. This is after he’s entered a no contest plea to three criminal charges and while avoiding jail time, he may be about to face league punishment.

Fowler was arrested in St. Petersburg last July on charges of battery, criminal mischief and petty theft in connection was an incident in an apartment complex. As we wrote then, witnesses to the altercation say that Fowler became physical with a man who had yelled at him for recklessly speeding through an apartment complex parking lot. It’s then alleged that Fowler not only punched the individual, but stomped his glasses and then threw the man’s groceries, including wine bottles, into a nearby retention pond.

Fowler was formally charged by the Pinellas County State Attorney’s Office on August 10th. On Thursday it was learned through a court documents request that Fowler has pleaded the case out:

As NFL.com reports, Fowler was sentenced to a year of probation, 75 hours of community service, $1,575 in fines and ordered not to have contact with the victim after submitting his battery case plea. He was ordered to pay an additional $1,000 in fines after his pleas on criminal mischief and petty theft charges.

It is not Fowler’s first arrest, as he was charged with assault and resisting arrest for a March 2016 incident in Dade Coutny. He also pled that case out in December 2016 and went into a diversion program to avoid jail time.

The NFL did not discipline Fowler after the 2016 incident, but just might now.

The ongoing belief has been that Fowler would receive at least a one game suspension for these latest actions/now plea deal. The NFL usually doesn’t not comment on nor disclose timelines on their investigations. However, it’s safe to assume they have been investigating and will do something with Fowler now.

Fowler, a former #1 pick, had a breakout season in 2017 with eight sacks, as the Jaguars defense was the top one in the NFL at rushing the quarterback. And, Jacksonville went on to win the AFC South and make the AFC Championship Game.

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