Seattle Seahawks cornerback Brandon Browner has been suspended indefinitely for violating the league’s substance-abuse policy, the National Football League said in a statement Wednesday after his appeal was denied. Browner, age 29, is in Stage 3 of the program, technically is suspended for life based on his status in the drug program but can apply for reinstatement after one year. Rumor has it that Browner will more than likely sue the NFL.
The reason why Browner believes he has a fighting chance is because he was escalated to Stage 3 of the drug program after missing a series of tests six to seven years ago when he was out of the league. Browner had a positive test for marijuana early in his career and never received any notice of ensuing tests that were sent to an old address. He was unaware he was still in the program and the Seahawks were unaware as well when they signed him after a stint in the Canadian Football League.
Browner has the right to file a process appeal that would be heard by Commissioner Roger Goodell. Unless that succeeds, the earliest Browner could apply for reinstatement would be Dec. 18, 2014. Browner was an impending free agent and was one of the top defensive players available, and obviously will not be getting a new deal now in March if everything stays the same with the suspension.
Browner’s recent history didn’t help the matter; he just served an unrelated four-game suspension for violating the performance-enhancing drug policy last year.
Browner had a groin injury that had him out for the last 4 games and was looking forward to returning to the lineup for the playoff run. The Seahawks signed him to a three-year contract in January 2011 after he spent four years in the Canadian Football League. He made the Pro Bowl in his first year.
Having the suspension starting now will cost him $80,920 — two game checks worth $65,294, plus two roster bonuses worth $15,626 for being on the 53-man roster.
“I want to thank the Seahawks organization for the incredible opportunity they gave me when they took a chance on a player who was out of the NFL and playing in the CFL for 4 years. I also want to thank all of my teammates, coaches, trainers, staff and the 12’s for their support, respect, and friendship and for helping me grow into the player, father, and person I am today. I have been treated with nothing but first class by everyone associated with the Seattle Seahawks and for that I am forever grateful.”