Ar­bi­tra­tor up­holds John­son sus­pen­sion

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - SPORTS - By Bob Grotz bgrotz@21st-cen­tu­ry­ @BobGrotz on Twitter

The other shoe has dropped on Ea­gles right of­fen­sive tackle Lane John­son, whose 10-game sus­pen­sion for vi­o­lat­ing the NFL pol­icy on per­for­mance en­hanc­ing drugs (PEDs) was up­held by an ar­bi­tra­tor.

An NFL spokesper­son said the sus­pen­sion be­gins im­me­di­ately and that John­son is el­i­gi­ble to re­turn to the Ea­gles’ ac­tive ros­ter Mon­day, Dec. 19. The Ea­gles host the New York Gi­ants that Thurs­day.

John­son could not im­me­di­ately be reached for com­ment. The Ea­gles re­leased a state­ment from vice pres­i­dent of foot­ball op­er­a­tions Howie Rose­man.

“We’re very dis­ap­pointed that Lane John­son has been sus­pended 10 games,” Rose­man said in the state­ment. “His ac­tions have af­fected the en­tire or­ga­ni­za­tion. We are all work­ing un­der a clearly de­fined set of rules and reg­u­la­tions set forth by the NFL in the col­lec­tive bar­gain­ing agree­ment with the NFLPA. Mov­ing for­ward, he has no choice but to hold him­self ac­count­able to Jeffrey Lurie, Coach (Doug) Ped­er­son and his staff, his team­mates, and to the en­tire or­ga­ni­za­tion and our fans. When he re­turns from sus­pen­sion, we will con­tinue to sup­port him and wel­come him back to the team. We are mov­ing on with our prepa­ra­tions for this week’s game in Wash­ing­ton.”

John­son could not be reached for com­ment. He has main­tained that he took a sup­ple­ment ap­proved by the league yet tainted with an il­le­gal sub­stance not listed among the in­gre­di­ents.

It’s the sec­ond of­fense of the PEDs pol­icy by John­son, who was sus­pended four games in 2014. If John­son vi­o­lates the pol­icy again, he faces a two-year sus­pen­sion.

Prior to the sea­son John­son signed a five-year, $56.2 mil­lion con­tract with $35.5 mil­lion guar­an­teed. The guar­an­teed money is in jeop­ardy.

Ped­er­son said he could roll with rookie fifth-round pick Hal Vaitai at right tackle, or move Allen Bar­bre to right tackle and play Ste­fen Wis­niewski or rookie Isaac Seu­malo at left guard.

The Ea­gles (3-1), fresh off a bit­ter one-point loss in De­troit, play three of their next four games on the road be­gin­ning Sun­day in Wash­ing­ton (32). All of those road starts are against NFC East op­po­si­tion.


Ea­gles right tackle Lane John­son has been sus­pended for 10 games by the NFL for vi­o­lat­ing the league’s pol­icy on per­for­mance-en­hanc­ing sub­stances. He’ll be el­i­gi­ble to re­turn Dec. 19. It’s his sec­ond sus­pen­sion.

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