The Pittsburgh Steelers were yesterday dealt a blow as it was announced wide receiver Martavis Bryant was facing a four-game suspension to begin the 2015 NFL season, although the exact reason for such a punishment was unclear.
Initial details as to why the second year star had been punished by the NFL were limited to the generic 'failing to adhere to the league's substance-abuse policy.'
Now though, courtesy of NFL Media's Ian Rapoport, we now know exactly why Bryant is looking at the maximum four game ban under the current policy. According to Rapoport, the Steelers man failed not one, but "multiple" marijuana tests.
SUBMIT AN ARTICLE
Apply to become a GMS writer by signing up and submitting a 250 word test article: http://gms.to/haveyoursay5
The news that the exciting young star had been foolish enough to fail one drug test was bad enough, but to learn that Martavis Bryant repeated the feat "multiple" times is far more worrying for the franchise moving forward.
With the league taking an increasingly tough stance on substance abuse the fact that Bryant is a repeat offender must now put him in a precarious position moving forward.
The Steelers only have to look at Josh Gordon of the Cleveland Browns to see how the NFL handles those that fail to fall into line with their policy.
Bryant is in the process of appealing his ban - an outcome expected in the next seven to 10 days - but Rapoport's revelation suggests he would be lucky to see it reduced.
With star running back Le'Veon Bell also out for the first two games due to an unrelated marijuana suspension, the Steelers face beginning the 2015 campaign without two key offensive players. They will be hoping that is as bad as it gets for the remainder of the campaign.
Steelers fans: Can your team cope without Bryant and Bell in early 2015? Have your say in the comments below...