Packers release DT Mike Pennel after second suspension

— -- GREEN BAY, Wis. -- After two suspensions in one season, defensive tackle? Mike Pennel?was released by the Green Bay Packers?on Monday, the day his roster exemption expired.

Pennel ended the season the same way he started it -- by serving a four-game suspension for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy.

The third-year pro filed a lawsuit in an Ohio federal court in November, alleging that the NFL and the NFL Players Association failed to satisfy the rules of the collective bargaining agreement when it came to hearing the appeal of his second suspension.

Pennel then agreed in December to accept the second suspension, one day after the NFLPA said Pennel's appeal hearing had been postponed.

A second suspension could have meant a 10-game ban, and it was not clear why Pennel received only another four-game ban.

The former undrafted free agent played in all eight games for which he was eligible in the regular season as a backup.

The Packers will visit the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday for a playoff game.