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49ers WR Jerome Simpson suspended six games

The San Francisco 49ers shared some news on Tuesday they'd long expected: They will begin a new season without wide receiver Jerome Simpson.

The team announced that the NFL has suspended Simpson six games for violating the league's policy and program for substances of abuse. Simpson can return to the active roster on October 19, the day after the team's Week 6 matchup against the Baltimore Ravens.

"The probability of a suspension was known when we signed Jerome," general manager Trent Baalke said in a statement released by the team. "Since joining the 49ers, Jerome has proven to be a great teammate."

Simpson's off-the-field issues occurred during his time with the Minnesota Vikings. The team released the veteran wide receiver last September after learning of a July arrest on charges of driving on a limited driver's license, possession of marijuana in a motor vehicle and open bottle in a motor vehicle.

Before off-the-field troubles derailed his career, Simpson was a productive player. In 2013, he finished second on Vikings with 48 catches and 726 receiving yards. He signed a two-year, $1.7 million contract with the 49ers in April.

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