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Cowboys face fines for suspended players for second straight year

OXNARD, Calif. -- For the second straight year, the Dallas Cowboys are facing a fine from the NFL under the league's remittance policy because of the number of suspended players.

The NFL is finalizing the 2017 remittance policy, but with the suspension of defensive end Damontre Moore announced last week the Cowboys have three players that have been sanctioned by the league this year.

Defensive lineman David Irving will miss the first four games of the season for violating the performance-enhancing drug policy. Wide receiver Shaq Evans, who signed with the team in January but was released shortly thereafter, was also suspended four games for violating the substance-abuse policy.

Even though Moore's suspension came as a result of an incident while he played with the Seattle Seahawks, the Cowboys are still penalized. And Evans also counts against the policy as well, even though he is not with the team.

A year ago, the Cowboys were fined $500,000 for the suspensions of Rolando McClain, Randy Gregory and DeMarcus Lawrence. McClain was initially suspended 10 games but was given an indefinite suspension. Gregory's suspensions rose from four to 14 games last year, and he will also miss this season because of multiple violations of the substance-abuse policy. Lawrence was suspended four games.

According to the 2016 policy, with three players suspended, the Cowboys would be on the hook for 25 percent of the base salary the players will lose -- roughly $91,000.

Three more Cowboys are possibly facing suspension: Ezekiel Elliott, Nolan Carroll and Damien Wilson. That could bring the fine to $500,000 -- the maximum, per NFL rules.

With four or more suspensions, the figure in the 2016 policy rises to 33 percent of the suspended players' applicable proportionate base salary for the games they miss.

Elliott is facing potential discipline for an alleged domestic violence charge made last summer by an ex-girlfriend in Columbus, Ohio. The Columbus City Attorney's office did not pursue charges against Elliott, but the league can impose a penalty through the personal conduct policy. A decision from the NFL on whether Elliott will be penalized is not expected this week, a source told ESPN's Adam Schefter.

Carroll was arrested on suspicion of driving while under the influence on May 30. Wilson was arrested on two counts of assault with a deadly weapon on July 4.

The club remittance policy was created to hold teams accountable for acquiring players who have violated various NFL policies.