Texans’ LB Brian Cushing Gets Four-Game Suspension

May 8, 2010 – By Scott

Before being drafted by the Houston Texans in the 2009 NFL draft, Brian Cushing was hounded by rumors that he had used performance-enhancing drugs. The Texans would have nothing to do with these rumors and went on to draft the line backer from USC. Cushing himself stated the he was not the type of person to use performance-enhancing drugs.

“I’ve passed every drug test out there and still have,” Cushing said during his 2009 draft news conference. “I’m not that kind of guy.”

Now, Cushing has learned his fate for actually violating the NFL’s policy on the use of performance-enhancing drugs and will serve a four game suspension for his misconduct.

The Texans defense has taken a huge blow with the loss of the defensive rookie of the year. Cushing had appealed the decision made by the league back in February during a hearing at the NFL scouting combine. However on Friday, the star linebacker learned that his appeal had been rejected.

“We were disappointed to learn that Brian has been suspended for the first four games of the 2010 season,” Houston general manager Rick Smith said in a statement. “Brian is a productive member of our team and this is a significant loss, but we have to be prepared to win without him.”

Cushing’s absence in the first four games could be devastating to Houston’s defense. They open up the season with the defending AFC South champion Indianapolis Colts followed by games against the Washington Redskins, Dallas Cowboys, and Oakland Raiders.

Cushing played a major role in the success of the Texans’ defense a year ago. He recorded 133 tackles and was elected to the NFL Pro Bowl. Also, he finished the season with 5 sacks, 4 interceptions and forced two fumbles for a team that had their first winning season in franchise history. He will be allowed to participate in training camp with Houston this summer, but he will begin his four-game suspension at the start of the season.

He had been scheduled to appear on the NFL Network show “Total Access Live” on Friday evening but had to cancel due to a family emergency. Cushing did not provide any details about this emergency, only stating that he is headed to New Jersey which is where he is from.

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