Calvin Ridley joins notable list of NFL players who were suspended by league for gambling

Calvin Ridley will miss at least the entire 2022 season after the Falcons receiver was suspended indefinitely for betting on NFL games during his time away from Atlanta last season. Ridley, who missed most of last season in order to work on his mental health, said via Twitter that he bet a total of $1,500 on NFL games. 

The 27-year-old receiver joins a small group of NFL players who have been suspended for gambling. Here’s a look at each player and what happened to them following their suspension. 

Alex Karras (1963)

One of the most dominant defensive players of the early 1960s, Karras was 28 when he served a one-year suspension after he admitted to placing bets on NFL games along with Packers running back Paul Hornung (more on him later). Before his suspension, Karras was urged by league officials to sell his financial interest in a Detroit-area bar following reports of gambling, among other things. 

Karras, who reprised his pro wrestling career during his suspension, was reinstated on March 16, 1964. He played seven more years for the Lions that included his third All-Pro nod and fourth Pro Bowl selection in 1965. Despite 100 career sacks and a spot on the Hall of Fame All-1960s Team, Karras was not enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame until 2020, nearly eight years after he passed away at the age of 77. 

Paul Hornung (1963)

Nicknamed the “Golden Boy,” Hornung’s sparkling reputation was hardly tarnished despite his one-year suspension. An All-Pro kicker and running back prior to his suspension, Hornung returned to help the Packers win NFL championships in 1965 and ’66. A neck injury forced a then 31-year-old Hornung to retire before the start of the 1967 season. A 1986 Hall of Fame inductee, Hornung holds NFL records for the most games with at least 30 points (twice) and 25 points (three times). 

Art Schlichter (1983)

As a rookie, the former Ohio State star attempted 37 regular-season passes with the Colts before he was suspended for the ’83 season. Schlichter was suspended for 13 months after he lost nearly $500,000 betting on basketball games. Schlichter played just two more years in the NFL following his suspension, but he enjoyed success in the Arena Football League, where he was named league MVP after leading the Detroit Drive to a win in Arena Bowl IV. 

Schlichter recently completed a 10-year sentence after he pled guilty to chargers of theft and engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity. 

Josh Shaw (2019)

A former defensive back, Shaw was on injured reserve when he was suspended through the 2020 season after betting on NFL games. Shaw, who was a member of the Cardinals at the time of his suspension, has not played in an NFL game since he was reinstated on March 20, 2021. 

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