The New York Giants may be without wide receiver Golden Tate to start the 2019 NFL season. As of Saturday, July 27, it was reported that Tate is facing a four-game suspension from the league. Here’s why Golden Tate is suspended, more details on his appeal to overturn the decision, and how the Giants receiving corps now looks.
Why is Tate suspended?
On Saturday, ESPN reported that Golden Tate has been suspended four games by the NFL for violating its policy against performance-enhancing substances. Tate’s suspension is due to his use of a fertility drug this past April. That drug contained an ingredient found on the NFL’s banned substance list.
The Giants’ receiver tweeted out a statement regarding his situation, the measures he took, and his confidence that the league will grant an appeal.
My statement. pic.twitter.com/WzP7W4bclB
— Golden Tate (@ShowtimeTate) July 27, 2019
After multiple seasons with the Seattle Seahawks and Detroit Lions, Golden Tate is considered an essential part of the New York Giants’ receiving corps. The team traded longtime star Odell Beckham Jr. in the offseason to the Cleveland Browns. Beckham was considered one of the best receivers in the league.
This past Thursday, the Giants lost two of their other receivers to injuries during the first day of training camp. Sterling Shepard suffered a fractured thumb and Corey Coleman tore his ACL.
Tate’s appeal chances, Giants’ receiving corps outlook
In his statement, Tate mentioned he’s “taken great pride in playing the game the right way” over his 10-year career and has “never had issues with the league’s policy.” In 2013, he was even critical of two of his Seahawks’ teammates for violating the substance abuse policy. According to an ABC News report, Tate called them “selfish” in comments to 710 ESPN Radio.
During an offseason interview, Tate talked about his excitement to be part of the Giants in the coming season. He previously mentioned watching the Giants a lot on television as a kid, leading to his desire to eventually play for them.
Still, Golden Tate may have to sit out the first four games of the 2019 schedule, as the league’s policy contains language that doesn’t excuse players from “not knowing” what they were taking. Per ESPN’s report, the NFL’s policy states that “Players are responsible for what is in their bodies and a positive test will not be excused because a Player was unaware that he was taking a Prohibited Substance.”
His appeal is scheduled for August 6. Even if Tate is suspended, he’ll still be able to participate in practices with the team, as well as preseason games.
The Giants have signed wide receivers Amba Etta-Tawo and T.J. Jones, and placed Corey Coleman on injured reserve. The Giants also waived kicker Joey Slye. pic.twitter.com/znNcJRZwbu
— Dan Salomone (@NYGsalomone) July 27, 2019
The Giants will have to work with other players they have should Tate’s suspension stay in effect for the regular season. That means relying on Cody Latimer, Bennie Fowler, Reggie White Jr., Alonzo Russell, and Russell Shepard. There’s also fifth-round pick Darius Slayton, but he’s been hampered by a hamstring injury.
In addition, the Giants signed Amba Etta-Tawo and T.J. Jones as potential receivers for their roster. There are also a number of other potential free agents they could look to if necessary.