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Josh Brent given second chance by NFL after serving jail time for manslaughter

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The NFL have confirmed that Josh Brent has been allowed to return to the Dallas Cowboys roster over two years after his last appearance in the league.

Tragic events

Brent has recently served a 180 day jail sentence having been convicted in January this year of intoxicated manslaugher in relation to the death of his former teammate, and good friend, Jerry Brown in December 2012.

Brown had achieved a place on the Cowboys practice squad just weeks before his death.

Brent was found guilty in January of being drunk at the wheel of a vehicle involved in an accident on December 7th 2012. Brown, a passenger in the car, died from resulting injuries.

Brent subsequently announced his retirement from professional football in July 2013 but is now looking to rekindle his NFL career with the Cowboys after serving his sentence and attending an alcohol and drug treatment center.

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The NFL, whilst allowing Brent's return, have laid out a precise set of guidelines the nose tackle must adhere to on his comeback.

Brent must not be involved in any further legal trouble, whilst they are enacting a no-tolerance policy regarding his alcohol use:

"Any prohibited alcohol-related conduct will likely result in an immediate suspension and potential banishment from the NFL," read the league's official statement late Tuesday.

He must also be seen to be complying fully with any probation stipulations imposed by the courts.

Brent will not be able to participate until Week 11 of the regular-season but is able to attend team meetings from Week 7, whilst traveling with the team and team activities are possible from Week 9 onwards.

The intense scrutiny that Brent will come under on his return is not due solely to the manslaughter case that saw the loss of his close friend Brown.

Prior to the 2012 car accident Josh Brent had already been sentenced to 60 days in jail after pleading guilty to driving under the influence in 2009. Brent also tested positive for marijuana twice in the summer of 2013 - spending a period of time in jail as he awaited the manslaughter verdict.

What now?

Many may feel Brent can count himself fortunate to have any remnant of a career remaining but it seems that his legal team is not content with the NFL's ruling.

The Cowboys player's agent, Peter Schaffer, has already confirmed that they will be appealing the 10-week suspension:

"We were truly hoping that the commissioner's response to Josh's request for reinstatement would be one that we wouldn't have to appeal, and that it would be fair and based on precedent," Schaffer told

"He could have forced the NFL to go through a tremendous amount of scrutiny for allowing him to play pending trial or for attempting to suspend him before he had been proven guilty," Schaffer continued.

"Where's the incentive for someone to do that in the future?"

Cowboy's support

The fact that Brent returns to the Dallas Cowboys, the franchise he made 39 appearances for since being selected in the supplemental draft in 2010, is no surprise.

The Cowboys retained their rights to Brent following his retirement in 2013 and as such they are able to activate him from their reserve/retired list rather than the player entering as a free agent.

Dallas owner Jerry Jones has long maintained his support for the player also, telling ESPN recently that the Cowboys will create a spot for Brent upon his return despite his difficult past.

The mother of Jerry Brown meanwhile has also voiced her support for Brent's return to the Cowboys despite his involvement in her son's untimely death in 2012.

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