Brian Cushing: Overtraining Behind Positive Test
Texans owner Bob McNair believes Cushing, and reports suggest McNair is in New York to persuade Goodell to lift or reduce the suspension. A Houston Chronicle report by John McClain says that McNair has paid for some of the testing.
Typically, the Texans' approach to bad news is like Obi-wan Kenobi dealing with Imperial Stormtroopers: "These aren't the droids you're looking for ... move along." So, it is extremely unusual for McNair to be dealing with such a explosive issue during camp. But then again, it is unusual for any owner to do such a thing: Can you think of a single sports owner who has ever gone to a commissioner to appeal a performance-enhancing drug suspension?
On the first day of training camp, Texans staffers told the media that Cushing wasn't going to answer any questions about his suspension. Cushing's original press conference after the suspension was announced was less than 10 minutes long, and there were no medical personnel or attorneys available to answer follow-up questions.
Texans owner Bob McNair answered plenty of questions about Cushing on the first day at camp, taking the position that he believed Cushing was telling the truth but understood the NFL policy. McNair kept referring to the issue as "complex."
Cushing has maintained his innocence since the suspension was announced, stating that he believed he had "medical and scientific data" that supported his view. None of that evidence, however, has been shared publicly in a clear manner. If Cushing wants people to believe that he has "overtrained athlete syndrome," then perhaps his representatives should provide that information to people other than just NFL officials.