On the same day free-agent wideout Jerome Simpson and the Minnesota Vikings agreed to a one-year deal, sources with knowledge of the situation told NFL Network insider Jason La Canfora that Simpson has been suspended for three games. The sources added that the process isn't complete, and the punishment could be lessened.
Simpson recently received a 15-day jail sentence and three years' probation in connection to a felony drug charge.
Vikings general manager Rick Spielman spoke to the media Tuesday, and said the team did its due diligence before signing the former Bengal.
"We did our research," Spielman said. "And we have had some success with guys with character issues. And guys have come into this organization and been very productive not just on the field, but as citizens, as well. ... He has a chance to be one of those success stories."
Spielman added: "We want the people we bring into this organization to represent the Minnesota Vikings because we represent our fans and our community. If we feel this kid has learned from his mistakes, regardless of who he is, we'll bring him in and give him a second chance . ... Every person we talked to stood by the kid's character."
The Vikings were a handful of teams considering the receiver. The St. Louis Rams also reportedly showed interest in Simpson as they look to surround franchise quarterback Sam Bradford with weapons.
Simpson gained attention in December by flipping over a defender and landing on his feet in the end zone.
Spielman described the receiver as a "freak-type athlete."
A second-round pick out of Coastal Carolina, Simpson has hauled in 71 passes for 1,004 yards and seven touchdowns in four seasons in Cincinnati.
Notes: Wide receiver Percy Harvin was scheduled to have arthroscopic surgery Tuesday to remove bone spurs from his shoulder, Spielman said. Harvin is expected to be ready in time for the first session of organized team activities starting May 29. ... The Vikings have begun their offseason workout program, and Spielman said they have "pretty much 100 percent attendance."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.