Heading into their Opening Week contest against the Philadelphia Eagles, the Cleveland Browns will prepare as if star cornerback Joe Haden will be in uniform.
Haden, one of the team’s most talented players, has been the subject of a report stating that the player could fall victim to a four-game suspension following a failed drug test earlier this summer. Allegedly using Adderall during a trip to Las Vegas, Haden has, wisely, left the report rest in the hands of the NFL where all back office dealings are kept quiet.
“I haven’t heard,” said Browns president Mike Holmgren in response to any update on the matter. ”Those are things that we’re not aware of and it’s not information that’s shared. It’s just when it happens, it happens, if it happens.
“With years of experience in this thing, some of those appeals things, the timing, there doesn’t seem to be a uniform way of doing it. Sometimes it takes longer and sometimes it doesn’t take long for the decision. All we can do, again, he’s practicing. We have not heard anything.”
Given that the team has already begun their preparation for the impending game, hopes are that the league will at least wait until following the Week 1 game to hand down any ruling on the alleged violation.
“I really don’t know if there’s a general rule [on timing],” said Holmgren. ”[Something this week] wouldn’t be fair though. If there isn’t a general rule, I’m going to ask them to make a general rule. That’s not fair. I don’t think they’d do that.”
[Related: Rambling about sports and drugs]