Giants’ Golden Tate Says He Has Been Suspended for Four Games07/27/2019
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Giants wide receiver Golden Tate has been suspended for four games for using a drug prescribed for fertility planning.
A 10-year veteran who signed with the Giants in March as a free agent, Tate announced the suspension in a Twitter post Saturday. He said that he plans to appeal the violation of the N.F.L.’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs and that he would have no further comment.
The N.F.L. has not announced the suspension and it had no comment, a league spokesman, Brian McCarthy, said in an email Saturday.
Giants Coach Pat Shurmur declined to comment, saying the team will see what happens.
Tate can practice in training camp, but will not be able to play in the first four regular-season games unless his suspension is overturned. That rarely happens.
Tate and General Manager Dave Gettleman spoke to the news media on Friday and neither mentioned the suspension.
The Giants’ receiving corps has been swamped by injuries in the first three days of training camp.
Sterling Shepard, who was supposed to take over as the No. 1 receiver with the trade of Odell Beckham Jr. to Cleveland, broke his left thumb in the opening practice on Thursday. It was disclosed the next day that wideout and kickoff returner Corey Coleman tore an anterior cruciate ligament in the same workout.
Darius Slayton, a fifth-round draft choice, has missed the first two workouts with a hamstring injury. Brittan Golden sustained a groin injury Friday.
The Tate suspension is the latest blow.
In his statement, Tate said he and his wife met with a fertility specialist in April. He took a prescribed drug and learned shortly after that an ingredient was a substance banned by the league. Tate said he reported the problem to the independent administrator of the N.F.L. policy on performance-enhancing substances, and alerted his coaches and general manager.
Tate is confident his appeal has merit. He said that he had never violated the league’s rules on banned substances, and that the treatment would have no effect on the 2019 season.
Speaking to the news media for the first time since breaking his thumb, Shepard said he believed he would be ready for the season opener at Dallas on Sept. 8. He said the thumb was not causing much pain. He hopes to start catching passes in a couple of weeks.
The Giants have three veteran receivers who have been starters: Russell Shepard, Cody Latimer and Bennie Fowler.
“We will be fine,” Sterling Shepard said. “Like I said, we have guys that will step up. This is the N.F.L., everybody can play and they will have an opportunity to showcase their abilities.”
The Giants signed receivers Amba Etta-Tawo and T.J. Jones on Saturday, and placed Coleman on injured reserve. Kicker Joey Slye was waived.
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