Josh Freeman: 'I've taken and passed 46 drug tests'
- By Chris Wesseling
- Around the League Writer
- Published: Sept. 30, 2013 at 10:26 p.m.
- Updated: Sept. 30, 2013 at 11:20 p.m.
The relationship between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and former face of the franchise Josh Freeman continues to deteriorate.
NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport obtained a statement from Freeman in response to an ESPN.com report that the quarterback is in Stage One of the NFL's substance-abuse program. The statement reads as follows:
"Let me be very clear. I have NEVER tested positive for any illegal drugs or related substances. Further, I have agreed to take, and have PASSED 46 NFL-regulated drug tests over the last year and a half. Since the confidentiality of my medical status has been publicly violated, I am choosing to address this matter so that grossly erroneous assumptions about me do not persist. Like millions of Americans, I have ADHD and I have been prescribed and permitted to take medication to treat this condition for the entirety of my NFL career. Well over a year ago, I took a different medication for the same condition (Ridilin rather than Adderall) , and to assure everyone that the error was a one-time mistake, I agreed to be voluntarily tested in the "NFL Program". Since that time, I have taken and passed all 46 drug tests I've been given, which test for every drug and banned substance imaginable. I agreed to allow such testing to be done at my workplace (team facility) because I spend all of my time there and I have nothing whatsoever to hide or be embarrassed about.
Unfortunately, it appears that some people who may have noticed the testing at my workplace have made hurtful and incorrect assumptions and chosen to disseminate inaccurate and very disturbing information. It is a shame that when times have gotten tough, people have chosen to attack the character of others, rather than supporting each other. I remain dedicated and focused to being the best quarterback I can be and to help a team win a championship."
Freeman's statement reflects a suspicion that someone associated with the Buccaneers leaked the story to win the "spin" war on the quarterback's banishment. If that is indeed the case, Freeman's camp just marched through the flank left open by ESPN.com's league and player sources.