NFL suspends Rams WR Mike Thomas 4 games, cites PEDs policy

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Mike Thomas, the Los Angeles Rams‘ second-year receiver, has been suspended without pay for the first four games of the 2017 season for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing substances, the league said Friday.

Thomas will be eligible to participate in all preseason practices and games, but won’t be eligible for the Rams’ 53-man roster until Oct. 2, after the team’s Week 4 road game against the Dallas Cowboys.

A sixth-round pick out of Southern Miss, Thomas barely played as a rookie and committed two notable mistakes when he received opportunities down the stretch — fumbling the opening kickoff against the Falcons, and then dropping a potential long touchdown against the Seahawks. But as one of few true deep threats on the roster, Thomas seemed to be carving out a role in head coach Sean McVay’s offense and appeared to have a chance to make the team out of training camp.

The Rams and the Chargers will each pay $645 million over nine years and the Raiders $378 million over 10 years in relocation fees that will be paid to the other 29 NFL teams, sources say.

During the offseason program, Thomas said he has undergone “tremendous growth” from his first to his second year.

“My rookie year, I was a little hesitant,” Thomas said then. “Just being at a new level, new environment, new coaches, I wasn’t feeling myself as far as playing fast. But now I know what to expect.”

Now, though, Thomas will sit out the first one-fourth of the Rams’ season.

He is the second Rams player to be suspended for the start of the season. Cornerback Troy Hill was dealt a two-game suspension for violating the league’s substance-abuse policy. The NFL says players are handed four-game suspensions on their first “positive test result for stimulant or anabolic agent.”

http://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/20052887/nfl-bans-mike-thomas-los-angeles-rams-4-games-cites-peds-policy

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