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Sherman, Browner will play until appeals are resolved

Richard Sherman, Brandon Browner

Seattle Seahawks’ Richard Sherman, right, celebrates with Brandon Browner and Earl Thomas, left, after Browner intercepted a pass against the Philadelphia Eagles in the second half of an NFL football game Thursday, Dec. 1, 2011, in Seattle. The Seahawks won 31-14. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)


Largely lost in the news that Seahawks starting cornerbacks Richard Sherman and Brandon Browner face four-game suspensions for violation of the league’s policy against performance-enhancing substances is that both players will continue to play until further notice.

As reported during Football Night in America, appeals will be filed and the suspensions won’t be active until the appeals are resolved.

There’s currently no date for a hearing and no timetable for a resolution. Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports that both players are accused of taking Adderall. Unless someone from the league office or the Seahawks disclosed that information to Rapoport (and in turn risked incurring a fine of up to $500,000), Rapoport’s information comes from the players or their agents. And because the league and the team technically can say nothing about the subject, the players or their agents can say anything.

That’s why Adderall is now regarded as the successor to the spiked over-the-counter supplement. By relying on the banned stimulant, any player can avoid the stigma of steroids, even if that’s precisely what he tested positive for.

With five games left, the Seahawks could lose both players for the stretch run -- and possibly for one or more playoff games. Otherwise, the suspensions could spill over in to 2013.