(St. Louis – May 11, 2010)
Last year, Brian Cushing from the Houston Texans won the AP Defensive Rookie of the Year award. Recently it was announced that he tested positive for steroids last September and would be suspended for the first four games of next season. Not only would he be suspended but he has also been stripped of his award from the AP and they are going to revote to pick a winner. Why am I upset though?
I think it’s great that a one of the major sports is finally doing something more than just slapping a player on the wrist for taking performance enhancing drugs. Taking the award away will make a statement to others that the NFL is serious about PED’s, but I don’t think they are even looking at a bigger problem.
Cushing was tested in September, he wasn’t told he was going to be suspended until February. That is about 5 months from the date of the positive test! He was allowed to play the remainder of the season instead of being suspended right away. What a joke!
The NFL needs to address their punishment policy. If a player tests positive it should be immediate suspension. I do realize that players can appeal suspensions but there has to be a way to speed up that policy so that it isn’t taking so long to say “yes you did take them, no the test wasn’t wrong, and yes you are suspended.” We need to hold our sports leagues to a higher standard. If they say they want to be clean, we hold them to it!