At a time when uncertainty still lingered regarding whether cornerback Patrick Peterson will play for the Cardinals in 2019, we now have an answer: He won’t. At least not for the first six games of the season.
Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that the NFL has suspended Peterson six games under the PED policy. Schefter initially tweeted that the suspension will last eight games before revising it to six games and pointing out that Peterson has dropped his appeal.
The PED policy does not expressly provide for an eight-game suspension. A six-game suspension is imposed when a positive test result is accompanied by other misconduct. Also, a player can be suspended up to six games when a PED violation is proven via documented evidence unrelated to a positive test.
“Details of what Peterson did, and when he did it, remain confidential, as per the NFL’s PED policy,” Schefter writes, ignoring the obvious reality that any information about a player’s status under the PED policy violates confidentiality, including his report regarding the fact that Peterson will be suspended six games.
Peterson will be eligible for offseason and preseason practices and games, and his regular-season suspension will end after the team’s sixth game. He’ll be eligible to return to play on October 20, against the Giants.
If, of course, he continues to play for the Cardinals. He could still be traded, and his return comes two Sundays before the 2019 trade deadline arrives.