JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Justin Blackmon was involved in a single-car accident early Saturday morning, but police say alcohol was not a factor.
Florida Highway Patrol spokesman Sgt. Dylan Bryan said Blackmon was not injured in the crash, which occurred just before 4 a.m. ET Saturday on Interstate 295.
Bryan said Blackmon, who has been suspended indefinitely for violating the NFL’s substance-abuse policy, lost control of his SUV after a rear tire blew and the vehicle ended up crashing into the tree line.
Bryan said Blackmon was examined by FHP officers, Jacksonville Fire and Rescue personnel and officers from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office — and none saw any indication that he was impaired.
“Our officers are trained to look for specific indicators — for example, slurred speech, bloodshot or watery eyes, the inability to follow instructions,” Bryan said. “If they notice indicators like that, they can progress into a separate investigation into DUI.
“He was very cooperative with investigators.”
It was encouraging news for Blackmon, who has a history of issues with drinking and driving.
Blackmon was arrested in Texas in 2010 on a misdemeanor DUI charge [later reduced to underage alcohol possession] after police caught him speeding outside of Dallas.
Blackmon was arrested again in May 2012 during a traffic stop in Stillwater, Okla., shortly after the Jaguars selected him with the fifth overall pick in the NFL draft. A breath test allegedly showed his blood alcohol content to be three times the legal limit. That arrest put him in the NFL’s substance-abuse program.
Blackmon was suspended for the first four games of the 2013 season because of his second violation of the substance-abuse policy, which occurred some time in the offseason after his rookie season, in which he caught 64 passes for 865 yards and five touchdowns.
The NFL suspended Blackmon indefinitely without pay last November for his third violation. He can apply for reinstatement prior to the start of the 2014 season, at which point the Jaguars can exercise clauses in his contract that void future guarantees because of the repeated violations.Covered University of Florida for 13 seasons for ESPN.com and Florida Times-Union
Graduate of Jacksonville University
Multiple APSE award winner