Patriots linebacker Brandon Spikes has been suspended four games by the National Football League for violating the league's banned substance policy.
Spikes will not appeal the suspension, according to the Boston Herald, so that he can come back for the Patriots first game in the playoffs.
Spikes will miss Sunday's game in Chicago as well as games against Green Bay, Buffalo and Miami.
No word yet on what the banned substance Spikes tested positive for that got him suspended.
Here is a statement from Spikes:
“I’ve been contacted by the NFL and informed that I will be suspended four games for the detection of an illegal substance in a drug test. The substance was a medication that I should have gotten clarification on before taking. It was not a performance enhancer or an illegal drug. The integrity of the game is very important to me. I understand the league’s ruling and apologize to my teammates, the fans and the Patriots organization for this mistake.”
Here is a statement from the NFL:
"Brandon Spikes of the New England Patriots has been suspended without pay for four games for violating the NFL policy on performance enhancing substances.
Spikes’ suspension begins immediately. He will be eligible to return to the Patriots’ active roster on Monday, January 3 following the team’s final regular season game on January 2 against the Miami Dolphins.
Spikes is eligible to participate in all playoff games. "