Bengals' Maualuga could face suspension

Bengals middle linebacker Rey Maualuga has been charged with a misdemeanor assault stemming from a bar incident in Cincinnati.


Police charged Maualuga on Friday after investigating allegations by a bar employee that Maualuga punched him in the face early Sunday morning. His arraignment is scheduled for Feb. 17.

This is Maualuga's second violation in two years under the personal conduct policy, which likely will lead to discipline from the NFL.

He pleaded guilty to drunken driving in February 2010 and was placed in the Stage One of the NFL's Alcohol and Substance Abuse program. Maualuga successfully won his appeal of a one-game suspension but he was still fined two game checks that totaled, $46,740. After spending a month in rehab following the DUI arrest, Maualuga said "It was definitely a life-changer for me."

It could be difficult for Maualuga to avoid a suspension this time because this is his second offense.

That wasn't the first time Maualuga has encountered problems with alcohol. During his freshman year at USC in 2005, Malaulga was arrested for misdemeanor battery in an alcohol-related incident. The charges were dismissed when he agreed to participate in an arraignment diversion program that included attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings.

This is a rough start to the offseason for the Bengals, who have had a history of players getting arrested. Maualuga is the fourth player to get in trouble with the law since last July, joining running back Cedric Benson, cornerback Adam Jones and wide receiver Jerome Simpson.