SAN DIEGO — Shawne Merriman's attorney said the San Diego Chargers outside linebacker failed a drug test because of a tainted supplement and will continue to play while appealing his four-game suspension.
David Cornwell said he believed Merriman tested positive for the steroid nandrolone, which is prohibited under the NFL's substance-abuse policy. Cornwell said the substance was in a supplement Merriman has been taking.
"He did not go into the back alley somewhere and put a needle in his butt for steroids," Cornwell said at a news conference Monday, about two hours after Merriman practiced with the Chargers, who had lost, 30-27, the day before at Kansas City.
Merriman said he spoke with teammates and coaches and "apologized to them for this being a distraction, especially the critical time we're going through as a team."