The NFL announced this afternoon that Seattle Seahawks defensive lineman Bruce Irvin has been suspended without pay for the first four games of the 2013 regular season for violating the NFL policy on performance enhancing substances.
Irvin is eligible to return to Seattle’s active roster on Monday, September 30 following the team’s September 29 game against the Houston Texans.
Irvin will miss Irvin Seattle’s season opener at Carolina, home contests against San Francisco and Jacksonville, along with the road contest against the Texans.
Irvin is eligible to participate in all offseason and preseason practices and games.
The miscue will cost Irvin $191,681 in base salary in 2013.
Irvin made a statement released through the team:
“I want to apologize to my teammates, coaches and Seahawks fans for making a mistake when I took a substance that is prohibited in the NFL without a medical exemption. I am extremely disappointed in the poor judgment I showed and take full responsibility for my actions. I will not appeal the discipline and instead will focus my energy on preparing for the season so I can begin earning your trust and respect again. I look forward to contributing to the team the moment I return.”
Losing Irvin for the first four games is a big blow for the Seahawks, with the likelihood that starting defensive end Chris Clemons also will miss time returning from ACL knee surgery in January, along with defensive lineman Greg Scruggs out for the year after recently having ACL reconstructive knee surgery.
Irvin is the sixth Seattle player to test positive for performance enhancing drugs since 2011.
Brandon Browner was suspended for the final four games of the 2012 regular season for reportedly testing positive for Adderall.
Seattle safety Winston Guy was suspended for four games in 2012 by the league for testing positive for performance enhancing drugs. Guy did not appeal the suspension.
Guy’s agent said he tested positive for an over-the-counter substance that’s on the league’s lengthy list of banned substances players are tested regularly for.
Offensive lineman John Moffitt was suspended for four games without pay in December 2011 for violating the league’s policy on performance enhancing substances.
According to Moffitt’s agent Michael George, his client was suspended for taking a drug used to treat hyperactivity, and that Moffitt did not pre-clear taking the drug with the league.
Offensive lineman Allen Barbre was suspended for the first four games of the 2012 season for violating NFL rules on performance enhancing substances.
Richard Sherman was suspended for four games in 2012 for reportedly taking Adderall, but the decision was reversed when the Seattle cornerback won his appeal with the league on the grounds that the sample was contaminated because of a leaky cup.
Irvin led all rookies in sacks last season with eight.