League, others refute report of positive drug tests

A website that focuses on the NFL draft recently reported that some draft-eligible players had tested positive for drugs. However, an NFL spokesman refuted that report Friday, saying “neither the 32 clubs nor the league office know the results of drug or steroid tests taken at the 2009 Combine.”

“The independent medical advisors who administer the tests have notified in writing those players –- and only those players -– who tested positive at the Combine,” the spokesman said in a statement. “Unfortunately, rumors about draft-eligible players, including rumors about test results, begin to circulate every year at this time. Many of these rumors are circulated for self-serving reasons, and they are terribly unfair to the players and their families.”

USC coach Pete Carroll was quick to defend Trojans LBs Brian Cushing and Clay Matthews, both of whom were named in the report. Carroll said he had talked to the drug-testing service and that Cushing and Matthews were cleared.

“These rumors are absolutely false,” said Carroll, according to USC’s official website. “If they were found positive, Clay and Cush would have been notified three weeks ago, which they weren’t, and all of the NFL teams would have been notified, too, which they weren’t.

“They’re both men of outstanding character and they never tested positive for anything here,” Carroll said. “This is an major example of irresponsible reporting, and the site that published this report should be ashamed of themselves.”

A lawyer at Athletes First, which represents Matthews, sent an e-mail to the website in question, saying, “Neither Clay nor our office has received notification of any positive test, whether for steroids or any banned substance.”

The lawyer also pointed out that the league hasn’t received the results of the drug tests and that teams haven’t been notified either.

Illinois CB Vontae Davis was also mentioned in the report. His representatives at France All Pro Athlete Management Inc. issued the following statement: “Neither Vontae nor our office has received any notification of any positive test, whether for marijuana or any other banned substance. In addition, we have been informed by several of our NFL contacts that they have not been notified of any drug testing results from the combine.”

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