The Minnesota Vikings released cornerback and 2020 first-round draft pick Jeff Gladney on Tuesday after he was indicted on a felony domestic violence charge regarding an alleged April incident involving a former girlfriend.
Brian E. Overstreet, Gladney's agent, responded via a statement shared by Charean Williams of Pro Football Talk:
"It’s a good thing that innocent until proven guilty still exists in this country. Unfortunately, the Vikings don’t view it the same way. Today, Jeff was indicted which is simply a normal step in the judicial process. It means the case is going to trial and nothing more. It does not speak to his guilt or innocence. We received information that the complaining witness in this case came forward and requested the case not be prosecuted. The Vikings did what they thought was best for their organization which we respect, but we still strongly believe in Jeff Gladney’s innocence. We look forward to his day in court so that he can clear his name. At this time, out of respect for the legal process and all parties involved, Jeff and his representatives will have no further comments."
NFL Network's Tom Pelissero added Gladney is a free agent but would immediately be made ineligible to participate in the upcoming season via the commissioner's exempt list if any team claims him while the case plays out:
Former #Vikings first-round pick Jeff Gladney is subject to waivers after he was indicted and cut today, but if Gladney gets claimed, source says he'd immediately go on the commissioner's exempt list in light of his indictment on a felony assault charge. No football anytime soon.— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) August 3, 2021
Per ESPN, Gladney has been sued by the former girlfriend, who has alleged that he assaulted her and then later tried to bribe her and scare her into not going public about the incident. Vikings owner and president Mark Wilf said earlier in the day the allegations were "very disturbing and something that's concerning to us as ownership and to our organization."
Gladney tallied 81 total tackles, a forced fumble, and three pass breakups during his single season with Minnesota after the team drafted him via the No. 31 overall pick.