As LSU quarterback Zach Mettenberger prepares for the draft, he has a complication to the process unrelated to his torn ACL.
Mettenberger generated a dilute urine sample at the Scouting Combine.
The NFL’s drug-testing policies typically treat a diluted sample as a positive sample.
Mettenberger’s physical therapist, Jason Eliowitz, attributes the positive test to efforts to combat dehydration. Eliowitz explains in the letter to Dr. Lawrence Brown that Mettenberger “was experiencing frequent muscle cramping during the day as well as at night while trying to sleep.” Thus, Mettenberger was advised to drink “as much as 1 to 1.5 gallons of of water per day, to increase his consumption of foods high in potassium, and to increase his sodium intake.”
It’s unclear whether this will shield Mettenberger from the substance-abuse program upon arrival at the NFL. More importantly, it’s unknown whether teams will accept the explanation and not regard the outcome as a red flag regarding efforts to mask either drug use or, given his effort to recover quickly from a torn ACL, the use of performance-enhancing substances.