Former Tyrone footballer Conor McKenna, now plying his trade with Essendon in the AFL, has been slapped with a three-week suspension for biting an opponent.

McKenna was involved in a tussle with Western Bulldogs forward Tory Dickson during a recent game when the two scuffled on the ground.

It was during that incident that Dickson reported feeling ‘a quick nip’ on his neck and although no skin was broken, the Bulldogs player was left with a red mark.

McKenna, who lined out for Tyrone at minor level, was charged with serious misconduct and referred directly to an AFL Tribunal.

The Irishman immediately pleaded guilty and appolgised for the incident.

"I take responsibility for my actions," he said. "I'm very sorry for what I've done and am looking forward to moving on and getting on with the season."

McKenna will now miss Essendon's games against Port Adelaide, Collingwood and Melbourne.

Former Kerry footballer and Sydney Swans star Tadhg Kennelly was among those to speak for McKenna during the hearing, offering a character reference.