Julian Edelman will need a better defense than “I don’t know what happened”

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Patriots receiver Julian Edelman reportedly is appealing his four-game suspension for violating the league’s PED policy. His statement from Friday doesn’t do much to create optimism that he has any chance of avoiding the banishment.

I don’t know what happened,” Edelman said. “I’ve taken many, many tests obviously over the course of my career, and nothing like this has ever happened.”

The fact that he has passed “many, many tests” is irrelevant; it’s no different, frankly, than a first-time bank robber saying, “I had previously gone many, many days without robbing a bank.” It takes only one positive test to trigger a four-game suspension, and it doesn’t matter if it happens in Year One or Year 20 of a player’s career.

Maybe Edelman is trying to imply that he was due for a false positive. Regardless, he’ll need something more than a vague suggestion that the sample was erroneously tested as positive in order to avoid the suspension. The PED policy operates under the concept of strict liability. A positive test results in a four-game suspension, no questions asked.

Absent something like proof of a flaw in the collection process or interruption of the chain of custody, the chances of winning on appeal are slim. And nothing from Edelman’s statement suggests that he has a defense that will hold water.

56 responses to “Julian Edelman will need a better defense than “I don’t know what happened”

  1. His statement wasn’t to give confidence he didn’t do it. His statement was to grab the low-hanging fruit which is the opinion of people looking to defend him/not wanting to believe he broke the rules so they can feel a little better about it. “He already said he doesn’t know what happened it’s not like he admitted guilt”.

  2. I’m sure he has more to say, but it’ll be to the NFL, not to the press and fans. You left out this part of his apology: “as this matter is being appealed, I can’t say any more.” So we’ll all just have to wait to find out the details.

  3. No one takes responsibility for their actions anymore when caught doing bad things. Respect is only given when you do so and mean an apology. But that’s not how so many people are. There is no depending on honor or someone’s word. So many are not deserving of trust or good will. Take your punishment like a man. You knew what you were doing when you did it. End of story. Anything that follows from that decision is deserved and your own fault.

  4. I’m not gonna say Edelman is innocent. Most players say that. But, there are some circumstances that it can be accidental, as was the case with RNinckovich. He took a supplement that had an ingredient not listed on the label that triggered his positive. Only NSF approved supplements guarantee the label lists all ingredients. The league didn’t care though. Their position is an athlete is responsible for what he puts in his body. I think RN’s excuse was legit though.

  5. The reports HGH increases an players ability is mostly bunk. HGH is legal if prescribed by a Dr. It’s main affect is healing injuries much much faster then usual. Players that have had severe injuries should get a pass. They did everything they could do to heal faster and HGH in this case, would be beneficial to both the player and his team.

    The perception that HGH creates something akin to super powers is just plain bunk. Out body makes HGH naturally. Society as a whole needs to wake up about Marijuana and other health supplements that are now illegal but have been on the planet since the dawn of time.

    What a players does to speed his recovery from an injury is nobody’s business but his. This super human results of HGH is pure BS

  6. tedmurph says:
    June 9, 2018 at 12:40 pm
    I’m not gonna say Edelman is innocent.

    ////////////////////////

    No, but you are giving excuses, much like Edelman is doing. Once just once would love to see a player come clean and admit to breakin the rules. He would not lose respect of fans, now he will be labeled a cheater and should have his career stats be wiped from the books.

  7. some Patriots fan just said the NFL has taken the stance that you’re responsible for what you put in your body. Umm, YES! Accountability. Your body is your money-maker. Come on, get real.

  8. “I don’t know what happened,” Edelman said. “I’ve taken many, many tests obviously over the course of my career, and nothing like this has ever happened.”
    ++++++
    He will not need a better defense than that statement. He has probably gotten away with PEDs for years. It’s called Patriot Privilege.

  9. I’m no Edelman apologist, but if he’s got legal counsel handling the appeal, I’m sure he’s been instructed against publicly disclosing his position.

  10. flviking says:
    June 9, 2018 at 12:57 pm
    tedmurph says:
    June 9, 2018 at 12:40 pm
    I’m not gonna say Edelman is innocent.

    ////////////////////////

    No, but you are giving excuses, much like Edelman is doing. Once just once would love to see a player come clean and admit to breakin the rules. He would not lose respect of fans, now he will be labeled a cheater and should have his career stats be wiped from the books.

    _________________________________________________________________________________________

    He should have his career stats wiped from the books? Well that’s totally not an irrational overreaction….

    And he can’t say anything else right now because the process is ongoing. How about we let the whole thing unfold and then you people can overreact one way or another once everything has been determined. Edelman has been tested for years and has never had a problem, so it’s logical that he might not even know yet why this test came back positive.

  11. jolink653 says:
    June 9, 2018 at 2:03 pm
    flviking says:
    June 9, 2018 at 12:57 pm
    tedmurph says:
    June 9, 2018 at 12:40 pm
    I’m not gonna say Edelman is innocent.

    ////////////////////////

    No, but you are giving excuses, much like Edelman is doing. Once just once would love to see a player come clean and admit to breakin the rules. He would not lose respect of fans, now he will be labeled a cheater and should have his career stats be wiped from the books.

    _________________________________________________________________________________________

    He should have his career stats wiped from the books? Well that’s totally not an irrational overreaction….

    And he can’t say anything else right now because the process is ongoing. How about we let the whole thing unfold and then you people can overreact one way or another once everything has been determined. Edelman has been tested for years and has never had a problem, so it’s logical that he might not even know yet why this test came back positive

    ///////////////////////////

    We know you love, love your pats and have homer glasses. But this is science, it’s a medical test. It’s either in your
    body or not. No one spiked your drink or slipped it in your club sandwich, you took it knowing what it was. Over reacting on wiping clean his stats? Why not. He was having an advantage over players who do not cheat. I believe as do many others that this is not the first time he took PEDs. He will be always labeled and remembered as a cheater aka Barry Bonds. I mean really what are we waiting to unfold, grandma put something different in her cookies?

  12. Should the other 159 players stats be wiped off the books too, or just the Pats? Sorry, I forgot about hater nation. I explicitly said I was not saying JE is innocent, just gave an example of a player not knowing, after chkg label.

  13. TedMurph No his excuse wasn’t legitimate. Players are tasked with knowing what’s going in their body and their able to send supplements to be tested thru either the NFL or the nflpa(I can’t remember which). The problem is athletes don’t take advantage of it and then use the claim it was from an otc supplement.

  14. I don’t think the point is that Edelman is saying he’s innocent because he doesn’t know. You are responsible for what you put in your body, even if you do something without knowing it. Everyone assumes it’s super easy when it comes to substances but it’s not. There’s a huge laundry list of banned substances, and unless you’re super careful you can ingest one at the bottom of the list in a random supplement that doesnt list it as an ingredient. That doesn’t mean that he shouldnt be suspended, it still seems he took a banned substance one way or another. But if you suddenly were fined, suspended, and accused of cheating at your current job with no knowledge that you were doing anything wrong, it’s kind of obvious that you’d want to state that even if you did screw up you weren’t trying to do anything bad.

  15. Expecting players to send every supplement out to a lab to be tested is unreasonable and impractical. If he checks the label, it should be good enough.In those situations players aren’t taking HGH, just something that tested pos

  16. The team’s fans desperately trying to justify this and coming up with excuses. A player on another team does this and these same fans have an entirely different outlook.

  17. He is as fake as Tammy hair plugs. This whole organization is a proven cheating fraud

  18. With what’s on the line, you absolutely should get your supplements tested. If you don’t, you’ve got nobody to blame but yourself.

  19. Patriots culture is to win at any cost by any means possible, so this comes as no surprise. Whether it’s pushing the legal envelope by looking for loopholes in the rules to exploit, or outright cheating, the Pats are the best at it. Great team and coaching for the most part, but really poor sportsmanship and a poor representation of the NFL.

  20. It is more like a long-time bank robber saying “I’ve robbed lots of banks and this never happened before.”

  21. This team has been cheating for too long. Time to shut them down and drain the swamp. The NFL needs to grow a pair and give NE the boot. Enough is enough. They haven’t won a legit SB yet and here they are cheating before the season even starts. Ridiculous.

  22. My question: with prevalent ‘media professionals’ stating that over 70 % of NFL players are taking some sort of PED/Steroid, why is it that there are so few players being caught? Are there certain tests the NFL are focused on? Anybody know more about this?

  23. I cant help but suspect that he knows darn well what happened and it was that if he didnt take something he wasnt making it back for too much of this season possibly all of it. So if taking something had him instead back in time for camp but destined to eat a four game suspension that was well worth the trade off. Im not even sure I blame him, he has very little career left anyhow at his age. So I think he should not bother with a defense. Just serve it and get on with the season. Its probably even good for him to not have to play all 16.

  24. tedmurph says:
    June 9, 2018 at 3:52 pm
    Expecting players to send every supplement out to a lab to be tested is unreasonable and impractical. If he checks the label, it should be good enough.In those situations players aren’t taking HGH, just something that tested pos

    ……

    First off, not sure why you distinguish high from other substances. They’re all NFL-illegal and you have no idea if w hat Edelman took was stronger/gives more benefits than hgh.

    Secondly, while sending supplements to be tested may not always be practical, surely these guys can afford to have someone research which supplements/companies are high quality/clean and stick to those.

    He likely took some kind of short cut, whether a banned substance, or not checking into a supplement. When your multi-million dollar career depends on it, there’s no excuse for not having somebody do the homework.

  25. Let those without sin cast the first stone

    Every single NFL team has players suspended for PEDs in the last 3 years. Hope all the fans were this worked up about the guys on your team, but I doubt it

  26. Edelman said. “I’ve taken many, many tests obviously over the course of my career, and nothing like this has ever happened.”….. My trainers always avoided me testing positive before….. Not Pats bashing as I think most of these guys juiced or have juiced just when I read the statement it didn’t exactly sound like a denial.

  27. like what? “it was for my wife” ? needs no defense at all. did what he needed to do to get better. come back strong after taking the 4 game rest and be ready to win when it counts. pats can restructure his payments to take the financial bite out of the suspension. go pats!

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