Browns Camp Football

Cleveland Browns general manager Ray Farmer has been suspended without pay for the first four games of next season for sending texts to personnel during games in 2014 and the team was fined $250,000, the NFL announced Monday.

Shay Marie

Farmer’s suspension starts on the midnight of the Sunday before the Browns’ Week 1 game and ends immediately after the team’s Week 4 game. During his suspension, Farmer can’t be involved in any team matters and is not permitted to be at the team’s facilities or games.

Browns general manager Ray Farmer admitted to texting during games in violation of the league’s electronic device policy. Farmer has not revealed who he texted, but sources and reports have said the texts went to an assistant coach and an unnamed team representative on the sideline and that the texts dealt with in-game strategy and use of personnel.

Farmer sent text messages throughout most of the season, a source close to the situation told The texts took place for multiple games and continued at least until quarterback Johnny Manziel got his first start in Week 15.

The texts did not necessarily deal with strategy, but with issues related to quarterback play, second-guessing of play calls and use of personnel — especially the quarterback. The individual on the sideline was expected to relay Farmer’s information/requests to the coaching staff.