Update 2/2/23 1:15 PM ET:
The NFL confirmed that Philadelphia Eagles offensive guard Josh Sills was placed on the Commissioner Exempt List and will not play in the Super Bowl after being indicted on charges of rape and kidnapping.
“Sills may not participate in practices and games or travel with the team while on the Commissioner Exempt List,” the league said in a statement on Wednesday, February 1. “The matter will be reviewed under the NFL’s personal conduct policy.”
Original story continues below:
Philadelphia Eagles offensive guard Josh Sills has been indicted on one count of rape and one count of kidnapping in Ohio, the state’s attorney general has announced.
The charges — both of which are first-degree felonies — were filed in the Guernsey County Common Pleas Court on Tuesday, January 31, less than two weeks before the Eagles are slated to face off against the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LVII.
Sills, 25, allegedly “engaged in sexual activity that was not consensual and held a victim against her will” in December 2019, the Ohio Attorney General said in a news release. According to the statement, the alleged crime was immediately reported, and the Guernsey County Sheriff’s Office conducted a detailed investigation. The Eagles have yet to publicly address the charges. Us Weekly has reached out to Sills for comment.
Sills was issued a summons to appear in Guernsey County Common Pleas Court on February 16, four days after the Super Bowl takes place in Glendale, Arizona. The Ohio native joined the Eagles last year as a free agent after going undrafted in the 2022 NFL draft. He played in one game during his rookie season.
Prior to his NFL career, Sills spent four seasons playing at West Virgina University before transferring to Oklahoma State University for the 2020 season.
Sills’ indictment is not the first time the NFL has been plagued by controversy. In September 2019, wide receiver Antonio Brown was accused of raping his former fitness trainer Britney Taylor in a federal lawsuit, which alleged three incidents of sexual assault. Brown’s legal team denied the claims at the time, deeming the lawsuit a “money grab.” The athlete had just signed a one-year deal with the New England Patriots, but he was released amid the scandal. In April 2021, Brown reached a settlement with Taylor.
The Central Michigan University alum continued to make headlines with alleged domestic violence incidents in January 2020. After turning himself in, he was charged with felony burglary of a vehicle, misdemeanor battery and misdemeanor criminal mischief in March 2020. Three months later, he pleaded no contest and received two years of probation and was also ordered to complete a psychological evaluation, 100 hours of community service and a 13-week anger management counseling program.
The following April, Brown signed a one-year deal with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In January 2022, he pulled off his helmet and jersey and ran off the field in the middle of a game against the New York Jets. Tampa Bay head coach Bruce Arians told reporters that Brown was “no longer a Buc” after the game.
Three days after the incident, Brown claimed in a lengthy social media statement shared by his lawyer, Sean Burstyn, that his exit from the game was due to “broken bone fragments stuck in my ankle, the ligament torn from the bone and cartilage loss, which are beyond painful.”
The Buccaneers subsequently confirmed they terminated the athlete’s contract and denied his claims about his injury.
“While Antonio did receive treatment on his ankle and was listed on the injury report the week leading up to last Sunday’s game, he was cleared to play by our medical team prior to the start of the game and at no point during the game did he indicate to our medical personnel that he could not play,” the January 2022 statement read.
Super Bowl LVII will kick off on Sunday, February 12, at 6:30 P.M. ET.