DRC SUS­PENDED, WON’T PLAY:

New York Daily News - - NEWS - BY PAT LEONARD AND JOHN HEALY

Gi­ants coach Ben McA­doo sus­pended Do­minique Rodger­sCro­mar­tie for leav­ing the team’s fa­cil­ity on Wednesday morn­ing in re­ac­tion to be­ing made in­ac­tive for this Sun­day’s game in Den­ver as pun­ish­ment for al­leged trans­gres­sions last Fri­day and Sun­day. But the veteran de­fen­sive back called McA­doo’s mes­sage “BS,” even as Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie pledged to re­turn Thursday. And con­trast­ing ac­counts that led to his sus­pen­sion in­di­cate this stand­off be­tween Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie and McA­doo is far from over. The Gi­ants are al­lowed to sus­pend Rodger­sCro­mar­tie a maximum of four weeks for vi­o­lat­ing the terms of his con­tract or con­duct detri­men­tal to the team, per the col­lec­tive bar­gain­ing agree­ment. Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie, how­ever, could ap­peal a sus­pen­sion through the play­ers’ as­so­ci­a­tion. Con­trast­ing in­for­ma­tion flooded in from dif­fer­ent sources and re­porters through­out Wednesday.

Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie was ab­sent from prac­tice but not on the in­jury re­port. McA­doo fol­lowed prac­tice with a vague an­nounce­ment that he and Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie had a “per­sonal” con­ver­sa­tion Tues­day and that Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie “de­cided to leave” Wednesday, so “we will sus­pend him.”

The coach’s state­ment, though, left out the fact that Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie’s de­par­ture had been in re­ac­tion to a dis­agree­ment over be­ing told he was benched for the Gi­ants’ Week 6 game.

Next, WFAN’s Mike Francesa re­ported that the sus­pen­sion was re­lated to Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie tak­ing off his pads at half­time Sun­day. He re­port­edly said he wouldn’t go back onto the field, which led to a phys­i­cal con­fronta­tion with an­other Gi­ant.

But Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie then shared a dif­fer­ent, more col­or­ful ac­count with ESPN’s Josina An­der­son. He said he and McA­doo had an ar­gu­ment about play­ing time on the side­line dur­ing Sun­day’s loss, ad­mit­ted he had “han­dled it the wrong way,” and said he would re­turn Thursday. But he added: “but to sit me a game had me hot, so I left. I was sus­pended way be­fore I left. I left bc I felt what he said was BS.”

Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie was un­der the im­pres­sion he al­ready had been sus­pended when he left, given that he had been told he wouldn’t play Sun­day in Den­ver and also would be fined. There is a ma­jor fi­nan­cial dif­fer­ence, though, be­tween be­ing fined and benched and sus­pended.

After Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie’s com­ments ap­peared to con­tra­dict McA­doo, team sources tried to paint a fuller pic­ture. The sources said there had been no al­ter­ca­tion be­tween the two and that the first time they had spoken of the in­ci­dent was on Tues­day.

The sources said Rodger­sCro­mar­tie had left the bench and gone to the locker room in the sec­ond half and then re­turned to the side­line, which is more in line with WFAN’s ini­tial re­port. And they said that what­ever hap­pened on Sun­day re­sulted in McA­doo telling Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie he would be in­ac­tive in Den­ver but that he was ex­pected to pre­pare all week as if he were going to play.

ESPN’s Dan Graziano, then re­ported that Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie had “slammed his hel­met down on the side­line, left the team while the game was in progress and went to the locker room with what team­mates and coaches un­der­stood was with the in­tent to leave the sta­dium.”

Graziano’s re­port also said Rodger­sCro­mar­tie was be­ing pun­ished and fined for walk­ing out on the team’s “re­cov­ery day” ses­sion last Fri­day. Graziano said the Gi­ants have no plans to re­lease or trade Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie and “in­stead plan to welcome him back with a clean slate once he has served his pun­ish­ment.”

Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie’s team­mates were caught off guard by the

sus­pen­sion, even though safety Landon Collins sug­gested there had been an al­ter­ca­tion.

“It’s a sit­u­a­tion be­tween them two,” Collins said. “I wouldn’t say he left the team, he just felt dif­fer­ently about the al­ter­ca­tion that hap­pened.”

Collins said Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie was present on Wednesday for treat­ment and meet­ings and did not show any signs of frus­tra­tion.

“He came in with a smile on his face and be­ing the same DRC that he was when he came in,” Collins said. “It sur­prised us all when (the sus­pen­sion) hap­pened.”

No player could or would con­firm or deny the WFAN re­port of a player con­fronting Rodger­sCro­mar­tie on Sun­day.

“I’m not talk­ing about that any­more,” of­fen­sive line­man Justin Pugh said after a few ques­tions. “I don’t know the whole sit­u­a­tion.”

At 0-5, with Odell Beck­ham Jr. and sev­eral play­ers in­jured and out for the year, Rodgers-Cro­mar­tie’s de­par­ture is the most ob­vi­ous sign yet of the Gi­ants un­rav­el­ing. Eli Ap­ple in­sisted it’s not. “I don’t think so,” said Ap­ple. “I think the lead­ers on this team, they’re not going to let any­thing like that hap­pen.”

But it is hard not to think that it’s too late.

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