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Dolphins sign safety T.J. McDonald despite eight-game suspension

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NFL: San Francisco 49ers at Los Angeles Rams Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Dolphins announced on Friday that the team has signed free agent safety T.J. McDonald to a one-year deal. The move comes just days after McDonald was informed by the league that he will be suspended for the first eight games of the 2017 regular season due to a violation of the substance abuse policy; McDonald was arrested in May 2016 for driving under the influence of prescription drugs.

McDonald was meeting with the Dolphins when the suspension was handed down, though both sides were fully informed that a suspension was likely.

A former third-round pick of the St. Louis, McDonald played four years with the organization, including moving with them last year to become the Los Angeles Rams. He has started 53 games in his career, recording 281 tackles, five sacks, four interceptions, 18 passes defensed, one forced fumble, and two fumble recoveries.

McDonald will be eligible to participate in the Dolphins’ offseason workouts, film room work, and training camp before beginning his suspension in the regular season. The Dolphins also have Reshad Jones, Nate Allen, Michael Thomas, Walt Aikens, and A.J. Hendy in the safety position group.