Thomas Davis Suspended Four Games For Banned Substance Test

Panthers LB announces suspension on social media; will miss first four games of 2018...

April 06, 2018 - 7:41 pm

By Ryan Chell; @RyanChellWFNZ on Twitter

Despite being in the midst of the NFL off-season and just three weeks away from the NFL Draft, another Friday afternoon in Charlotte has come and gone with more news from the NFL league office which involves the Carolina Panthers. 

Late Friday afternoon, Panthers LB Thomas Davis went to Twitter to announce that he has been suspended for the first four games of the 2018 season after testing positive for a banned substance.

Davis, who turned 35 at the end of March, said that he tested positive for a masking estrogen agent in his lastest drug test, and stood on his integrity that he did not knowingly try to cheat with the banned substance.   

“I was informed that I tested for a banned substance. I was completely caught off-guard by this. I’ve never in any way done anything to intentionally cheat the game. It’s one of those situations where the NFL rules clearly state that you as a player are clearly responsible for what you put in your body. I’ve taken the same substance for the last 7-8 years and never had any issues."

Davis, who has suffered three torn ACLs in his football career and returned quickly from a broken arm to play in Super Bowl 50, said that this news came as quite the shock to him - given his regular off-the-field regimine in taking care of his body, and asked Panthers fans to trust him that he knowingly didn't put any illegal substances into his system.

"I’ve been tested numerous times over the years while taking the same stuff and unfortunately this is some of the things that can happen when you take supplements. I’ve never tested positive for a steroid or HGH. It’s not one of those situations. It turned out to be an estrogen blocker that triggered a positive test for me. I just want you guys to know that in no way would I ever do anything – as I said – to cheat this game to try to create a competitive advantage over anybody. I’ve always tried to do things the right way and that’s something I will continue to do when I get back on the field."

While maintaining his innocence with the positive test, Davis did acknowledge the personal responsibility he has as a player for whatever he puts into his body, and Davis said he will not appeal or fight the suspension. 

"Just know-in no way-have I done anything intentional to try and cheat this game. It’s one of those situations where the NFL rules clearly state that you as a player are clearly responsible for what you put in your body. I’ve taken the same substance for the last 7-8 years and never had any issues."

With Davis' absence, it appears barring a move in free agency or the draft that the Panthers will ride with Luke Kuechly, former first-round pick Shaq Thompson and David Mayo as their linebacking corps while Davis serves his suspension. 

Davis had said earlier in the off-season that 2018 would be his "final ride", but as someone who has taken a lot of pride in his body of work as a Panther and as an NFL LB, Davis' last words in his social media post hinted at this incident as "unfinished business" and maybe this would put the retirement talk on delay.  

I’m going to serve this four-game suspension, and I’ll be back and ready to go back out there with my teammates. and who knows…maybe this isn’t my last year.”  

 

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