Tampa, Fla. — Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston has been suspended for the first three games of the regular season for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy.
Winston said in a statement released on Facebook that the NFL informed him of its decision Thursday.
Winston said “in the past 2½ years my life has been filled with experiences, opportunities and events that have helped me grow, mature and learn.” Winston added he has eliminated alcohol from his life.
An Uber driver told BuzzFeed late in 2017 that during a 2016 ride, she took Winston through a drive-thru Mexican restaurant. While in line, Winston, who was in the front passenger’s seat, reached over and grabbed the driver’s crotch.
Winston apologized to the Uber driver Thursday, without saying the incident occurred as she described.
“First and foremost, I would like to say I’m sorry to the Uber driver for the position I put you in,” Winston said in a statement through NFL Media. “It is uncharacteristic of me and I genuinely apologize.”
Winston, the first pick in the 2015 NFL Draft, has started 45 of the Bucs’ past 48 games. He missed three games last season with a shoulder injury.
He will miss the Bucs’ games against New Orleans, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh and will return Sept. 30 for a game at Chicago.