Rams' Troy Hill suspended by NFL for violating substance abuse policy

Los Angeles Rams backup cornerback Troy Hill has been suspended without pay for the first two games of the 2017 regular season for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy.

Hill won't be eligible to return to the active roster until Sept. 18, following the Rams' Week 2 home game against the Washington Redskins. But he can participate in all offseason and preseason practices and games until then.

The league did not specify a reason for the suspension, but Hill was arrested on suspicion of DUI the Saturday morning before the Rams' Nov. 20 home game against the Miami Dolphins. The Rams made him inactive for that game, then later stashed him on their practice squad and didn't activate him again until the middle of December.

During the incident, Hill was driving on an L.A. freeway at around 8 a.m. PT when his Mercedes swerved over multiple lanes and crashed into the back of a semi truck. Hill, who suffered a busted lip during the crash, was given a field sobriety test and arrested on the spot.

An undrafted free agent in 2015, Hill initially signed with the Bengals and played in spurts for the Rams last season, starting four games.

The Rams didn't draft a cornerback this year, but Hill is seemingly down in their depth chart nonetheless. E.J. Gaines and the recently signed Kayvon Webster are expected to compete for a spot on the outside, opposite Trumaine Johnson. Lamarcus Joyner, who will play free safety in base sets, and Nickell Robey-Coleman can fill the role at slot corner. As backups, the Rams also have Mike Jordan and Blake Countess, among others.

Speaking days after the incident, Hill called his DUI arrest "a lesson and a blessing."

"Something that I worked so hard for was stripped away from me just from a stupid decision," Hill said then. "If you don't learn from the situation that you're in, you'll never grow as a person."