Redskins claim Reuben Foster off waivers after LB’s arrest on domestic violence charge
Reuben Foster is getting another chance in the NFL.
The Washington Redskins claimed the former San Francisco 49ers linebacker off waivers Tuesday after he was arrested on suspicion of domestic battery Saturday night in Tampa.
Foster was also placed on the commissioner's exempt list Tuesday and will not be eligible to practice or play in games while the NFL investigates the matter.
A woman alleged Foster "pushed her in the chest" and "slapped her with an open hand" at the Grand Hyatt hotel where the 49ers were staying at before their game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, according to the criminal affidavit provided by Tampa police. The alleged victim is the same ex-girlfriend who made and later recanted domestic violence allegations against Foster earlier this year.
USA TODAY Sports does not identify alleged victims of domestic violence.
"Today we have claimed the rights to LB Reuben Foster," Redskins senior vice president of player personnel Doug Williams said in a statement. "The Redskins fully understand the severity of the recent allegations made against Reuben. If true, you can be sure these allegations are nothing our organization would ever condone.
"Let me be clear, Reuben will have to go through numerous steps including the full legal process, an investigation and potential discipline from the NFL, as well as meetings with counselors associated with the team before he will ever have the opportunity to wear the Burgundy and Gold as a player. That being said, we decided to investigate the situation with Reuben further by claiming his rights after candid conversations with a number of his ex-Alabama teammates and current Redskins players who were overwhelmingly supportive of us taking this chance.
"Nothing is promised to Reuben, but we are hopeful being around so many of his former teammates and friends will eventually provide him with the best possible environment to succeed both personally and professionally."
Foster was suspended by the NFL for two games this offseason for violating the league's policies on personal conduct and substance abuse after he pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor weapons possession charge and faced a misdemeanor marijuana possession charge that was later dropped.
Niners coach Kyle Shanahan said the organization it was confident it had the right structure in place for Foster.
“I thought rock bottom was last time,” Shanahan said Monday. “And I thought it would be very simple that that would be his wake-up call. And I think it was, in a lot of areas.
“But to put yourself in the situation that he put himself in, whether it happened or not, if it happened, it’s so easy, but if it didn’t, that still was too bad of a decision to make us comfortable with keeping that person in our organization."
Foster, 24, was the 49ers' second-leading tackler in his rookie season in 2017 after being the No. 31 overall draft pick out of Alabama.
The Redskins have seven other former Crimson Tide players, including five on their active roster (two are on injured reserve).
Follow Michael Middlehurst-Schwartz on Twitter @MikeMSchwartz.
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