Cincinnati Bengals defensive end DeQuin Evans has been served his eight-game suspension and has been cleared to practice, the team announced on Monday.
Evans has a practice exemption this week, which expires this Friday (Nov. 1), but he'll be allowed to participate in team activities.
In order for him to play this Thursday against the Miami Dolphins, the team will need to place him on the 53-man roster; which means removing a spot on the roster, which is possible though entirely improbable (we only mentioned it as a point, nothing else really). Evans totaled 47 pass rushes during the preseason, but only two quarterback pressures.
The team has a roster spot to give once they place Leon Hall on Injured Reserve. There's also the question about other injuries, such as defensive tackle Devon Still, offensive tackle Andrew Whitworth, and safety Taylor Mays, all of whom have unclear timelines for their eventual return. Linebacker Rey Maualuga will be out at least three weeks, if not more. However, a lot will depend on when Andrew Hawkins, who practiced all of last week, is activated on the 53-man roster.
Evans was suspended earlier this year for violating the league's performance-enhancing substances policy for a second time (the first violation was in 2011).
Evans may qualify for the practice squad, based on NFL rules that state a player might be eligible for a third practice squad season if the team maintains "no less than 53 players on the active/inactive list at all times."