Cardinals' DeAndre Hopkins says failed drug test was 'contamination' that he still cannot explain
Arizona Cardinals wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins said the traces of an illegal substance discovered in his system during an NFL drug test in November were ostarin, a selective androgen receptor modulator (SARM) not approved for human use or consumption in the United States or any other country.
Hopkins' positive drug test violated NFL policy regarding performance-enhancing drugs and resulted in a six-game suspension early in the 2022 season.
"It found 0.1 percent in my system," Hopkins said. "If you know what that is, you know it's a contamination, not something that was directly ingested. I don't take any dietary supplements. I have never taken any dietary supplements. I hardly take any vitamins.
"So obviously I was shocked that something like this was happening to me, but my team and I are still trying to figure out what's going on."
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Hopkins made his remarks to reporters Wednesday while attending Suns center JaVale McGee's charity softball game at Chase Field.
Typically, SARMs are used to produce anabolic activity and increase muscle growth by directly stimulating androgen receptors. Hopkins missed eight games last season due to hamstring problems and a torn medial collateral ligament in his knee that required season-ending surgery.
As he did during a statement on social media when the suspension was originally announced in early May, Hopkins again claimed Wednesday he didn't know how Ostarine, not even a small trace of it, got into his system.
June 22, 2022; Phoenix, Arizona, United States; Arizona Cardinals wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins during the Water for Life charity softball game hosted by JaVale McGee and his Juglife Foundation at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Rob Schumacher-Arizona Republic
"It wasn't my fault," he said. "I'm pretty much a naturopathic person."
Hopkins told reporters Wednesday he hopes there's some way to reduce his suspension before the start of the season, but considering how he's already withdrawn his appeal with the NFL, it's doubtful that a six-game reduction will happen is possible.
As for the suspension, he said: "It is what it is.
"I'm a competitor, so it's frustrating for me every time I'm not on the field," he added. "This is the NFL. It's the next man. I have no doubt these guys will win those six games until I'm ready.
Hopkins did not participate in on-field drills with the Cardinals during off-season practice, including the team's recently completed mandatory mini-camp. However, he trained with coaches on the side.
Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury said Hopkins and his surgically repaired knee are ready for training camp to begin, although the team will be cautious about how much they use him during the preseason. Hopkins is allowed to attend training camp and attend preseason games, but once the season begins, he must stay away from the Cardinals entirely for a full six weeks.
"He's close," Kingsbury said. "We're obviously very cautious as he doesn't play for the first six weeks and that was our biggest thing putting together a plan for training camp and the next four weeks that doesn't build him up and ramp him up like he's at the moment for the week 1 to play.
"Well, we have a good plan, but he's looking great, he's excited. I know he's frustrated that he can't play the first six, but like I said, I think we're going to get the best version of him in the last eleven and he'll be fun to watch.
This article originally appeared in Arizona Republic: Cardinals' Hopkins Still Confused About Failing Drug Test: 'It Wasn't With Me'
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