Torrey Green, an undrafted rookie linebacker from Utah State, was waived by the Falcons on Thursday after the team found out that he was under investigation for rape and possible sexual-assault charges.
The Cache County attorney’s office in Utah is actively investigating Green, according to TMZ Sports.
“We don’t want anybody connected to the organization that has those kinds of accusations around them,” Falcons owner Arthur Blank said Thursday. “The player was cut. We found out about it (Wednesday) night. The player was cut (Thursday) morning. The decision was made (Wednesday) night. The coach spoke to the team (Thursday) morning. They understand it. We understand, and we’ve moved on.”
Green was considered a long shot to make the team.
“He needed to go and take care of his situation,” general manager Thomas Dimitroff said. “We needed to do the best thing for the organization.”
Dominique Price, Green’s agent, didn’t want to comment on the situation when reached by phone. He was awaiting a call from Dimitroff.
The Falcons have steered away from players with character issues. They routinely remove players with sketchy backgrounds from their draft board.
Last season, when linebacker Prince Shembo was charged with animal cruelty in the death of a dog, he was immediately released.
“In this case it was a player,” Blank said. “It could have been a coach, it could have been a front-office staff (person), it could have been staff or it could have been somebody in personnel. It could have been whatever.”
In the Green case, the first incident took place on Jan. 14, 2015. The second incident took place on Nov. 21, 2015. A third woman said Green groped her multiple times against her will. They all reported the incidents to police.
The investigation reportedly is ongoing, and prosecutors have not decided whether to charge Green.
Green played in 32 games during his four-year career at Utah State, including starting 10 games. He finished his career with 90 tackles, which included seven sacks and 20.5 tackles for loss, while adding two interceptions, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery and one pass breakup.
He signed with the Falcons on May 5. His bio was immediately removed from the team’s website and new rosters where printed with his name removed to hand out to fans and the media.
“We take all of the allegations seriously here with the players and really in the whole organization,” Falcons coach Dan Quinn said. “It was probably an uphill battle for Torrey here at linebacker with the competition that we have. So, we made that move.”
The NFL, while trying to reach out to female fans over the past few seasons, has cracked down on players with domestic cases in the wake of the Ray Rice domestic-violence case, the Adrian Peterson child-abuse case and the Darren Sharper rape cases in multiple states.