Seattle Seahawks starting cornerbacks, Richard Sherman and Brandon Browner, are facing four-game suspensions for violating the NFL’s performance-enhancing drug policy, reportedly stemming from their use of Adderall.
The Seahawks, in a statement issued Sunday night, said they “are aware of” the report, which came from ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Sherman denied using Adderall, usually prescribed for attention deficit disorder, after the Seahawks’ loss to the Miami Dolphins. The NFL allows players to take some banned substances, like Adderall, if they are prescribed by a doctor and approved in advance by the league. Adderall is a combination of dextroamphetamine and amphetamine.
“Something I have never done,” Sherman said in a text message to the NFL.com’s Steve Wyche. He said he has not “taken anything” that would warrant a suspension and tweeted:
This is issue will be resolved soon and the truth will come out. Not worried
— Richard Sherman (@RSherman_25) November 26, 2012
If suspended, Sherman and Browner, considered to be among the top cornerback combos in the league, could play until their appeal, which would be expedited, has been heard. Their absence, though, could affect the NFC wild-card race, with the 6-5 Seahawks playing the Bears on Sunday in Chicago. They would be replaced by Marcus Trufant and Walter Thurmond.
There have been a number of suspensions for unapproved Adderall use this season. Why would a player use Adderall without getting a prescription and league approval ahead of time? Perhaps for a big boost as a long season enters its stretch and a playoff berth is on the line. It has an effect “like a hundred cups of coffee,” an unnamed player told CBS Sports’ Mike Freeman in October. Players told Freeman that they usually take it with diet soda or coffee, which heightens their ability to concentrate for 10-to-15 hours.
Adderall has been on the league’s performance-enhancing drug list since 2006.