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Martavis Bryant reportedly reinstated as wide receiver eyes NFL comeback

Bryant has not played in the NFL in nearly five years since being suspended indefinitely for violating the league’s substance abuse policy. (Photo by Joe Amon/The Denver Post via Getty Images) (Joe Amon via Getty Images)

Nearly five years after being suspended indefinitely by the NFL, the league has reinstated wide receiver Martavis Bryant, according to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero.

Bryant, who will turn 32 next month, has not played in the NFL since 2018 when he was with the Oakland Raiders.

The 2014 fourth-round pick played with the Pittsburgh Steelers and showed promise early on. He recorded 1,314 receiving yards and 14 touchdowns in his first two seasons. That second season in Pittsburgh saw his first suspension — a four-ban — for violating the league’s substance-abuse policy.

In March 2016, the NFL suspended Bryant for the entire 2016 season for another violation.

After sitting out the 2016 season, Bryant was conditionally reinstated in April 2017 and returned to the Steelers. He played 15 games that season and recorded 603 receiving yards and three touchdowns.

Bryant was traded to the Raiders in April 2018. Nearly five months later, he was released by Oakland and re-signed 10 days later while facing an indefinite suspension by the league.

A knee injury ended Bryant’s season in early December 2018, and a week later he was suspended indefinitely for violating the terms of his conditional reinstatement from a previous ban. He applied for reinstatement that summer.

Since exiting the NFL, Bryant has still been around football. He had two stints in the Canadian Football League with the Toronto Argonauts and Edmonton Elks but never played a game with either team. He was suspended and later released by the Argonauts for failing to report to training camp and was cut by the Elks before joining the team.

In 2021, Bryant signed with the Massachusetts Pirates of the Indoor Football League, then moved on to the FCF Beats with the short-lived Fan Controlled Football League a year later. He most recently played with the XFL’s Vegas Vipers, catching 14 passes for 154 in eight games.

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