Johnny Jolly might receive a second chance at playing in the NFL after a Houston judge has decided not to sentence the Packers' defensive end to serve jail time, instead giving him probation for a 2008 drug-possession charge.
Jolly pleaded guilty on Thursday morning in state court for being caught with 200 grams of liquid codeine, which is a controlled substance, three years ago. The league suspended him indefinitely in July 2010, and he missed all of Green Bay's Super Bowl championship season.
District Judge Denise Bradley agreed to put the 28-year-old Jolly on deferred adjudication, which if successfully completed, means he will not have a conviction on his record. However, if his probation is revoked, he can be sentenced to a maximum of 20 years in prison.
As part of his sentence, Jolly will receive drug treatment at a facility in Houston run by former NBA player and coach John Lucas, who recently gave up his job as former NFL player JaMarcus Russell's life coach. He also was fined $500 and must perform 240 hours of community service.
Also, for the next five years, he cannot go to clubs or bars, drink alcohol or associate with his half-brother and two cousins, who were involved in the drug allegations.
His suspension by the league has not been lifted and Jolly won't even be able to appeal to commissioner Roger Goodell until the lockout is over.
Jolly also was arrested in March on charges of possession of codeine, but those charges were dropped as part of this plea deal.