The NFL announced Wednesday that Brooks had upheld the suspension, the longest ever imposed by the league for an on-field incident.
Burfict missed the Raiders’ victory Sunday in London over the Chicago Bears and now is ineligible to play until next season. He will end up missing 12 games, as well as any playoff games in which they might play.
The suspension will cost Burfict $879,411.76, or thirteen-seventeenths of his 2019 base salary of $1.15 million. He also will fail to collect roster bonuses reportedly worth $21,875 per game, a total of $262,500 for a dozen games.
Burfict’s representatives argued that the unprecedented punishment was excessive for a football play. The longest previous NFL suspension for an on-field incident was a five-game suspension given to Albert Haynesworth, then with the Tennessee Titans, for stomping on the Dallas Cowboys’ Andre Gurode during a 2006 game.
The NFL, when imposing the suspension, cited Burfict’s status as a repeat offender under the league’s player safety rules. While he was with the Cincinnati Bengals, Burfict was suspended twice for illegal hits and fined repeatedly. In 2017, appeals officer James Thrash reduced the league’s five-game suspension of Burfict for an illegal hit to three games.
Burfict was ejected from the game against the Colts for his hit on Doyle, delivered as Doyle began to get to his feet after going to one knee to make a catch. The league said that Burfict violated the rule, put in place before last season, prohibiting a player from lowering his head and using his helmet to deliver a blow to an opponent.
Jon Runyan, the NFL’s vice president of football operations, wrote to Burfict when the suspension was imposed last week that “there were no mitigating circumstances” surrounding the hit on Doyle, which Runyan wrote “was unnecessary, flagrant” and avoidable.