Shanahan says appeal process should be changed

Brandon Meriweather prepares to hit Alshon Jeffery on a play that resulted in a penalty. (Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post)

Brandon Meriweather prepares to hit Alshon Jeffery on a play that resulted in a penalty. (Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post)

Coach Mike Shanahan said that safety Brandon Meriweather would have had a difficult time playing for the Washington Redskins this weekend in Denver, given the preparation time he missed, even if his two-game suspension by the league had been completely overturned Wednesday on appeal.

It’s a moot point now, since appeals officer Ted Cottrell instead reduced Meriweather’s suspension to one game, leaving Meriweather ineligible to play Sunday at Denver.

“There’s a lot of guys that have some fines in the past,” Shanahan said Thursday. “What determines him to be suspended, I’m not really sure with the appeal process. But even if he did come back to [be eligible to] play this week, it would have been hard for him to come back, missing a couple days going through our game plan and missing practice. And so it’s not the ideal system right now. But it is what it is and we’ll deal with it.”

Shanahan said he would like to see the appeal process changed.

“I think in a perfect world, if somebody was going to go through an appeal process, what you’d like to be able to do is maybe suspend somebody for the next game,” Shanahan said. “It’s gonna take a few days to look at it and go through the process, go to New York, have your hearing. But to actually not be able to be in the [practice] facility for two or three days, then find out on a Thursday or possibly a Friday that he could play, and he would miss all that work [and] all that preparation, it would be hard for him to play anyhow. It’s something that I’m sure we’ll talk about in the offseason. But it is tough for any team to lose somebody.”

Shanahan did not express any objections Thursday to Meriweather’s suspension or the decision made by Cottrell on the appeal.

“It is what it is,” Shanahan said. “They looked at it and felt like he deserved a one-game suspension. … He won’t be with us this weekend and we’ll deal with that, and we’ll go from there.”

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