No more supplements, Lane Johnson says. Those days are over.
Johnson, who faces a 10-game NFL suspension after a second positive test for a banned substance, said Wednesday he’s finished taking anything that could possibly put him at risk for a career-threatening third suspension.
Johnson claims the amino acid he ordered online and took was approved by the NFL but was tainted with a banned substance that didn't appear on the label, the so-called peptide found in Johnson’s sample.
Johnson also said he is planning to take legal action against the company that provided him with the amino acid.
“Going after them,” he said. “I have people on it to get it done.”
Johnson declined to identify the company that supplied him with the supplement.
Johnson was suspended for four games in 2014. A third suspension would result in a two-year ban.
“Seriously, I don’t want to have to go through this again,” Johnson said at his locker after practice Wednesday. “Unless something changes, the policy, I don’t trust anything.
“I can’t risk it. If it happens again, I miss two years and I’m just not going to risk that happening. I’m not taking any chances.
"Food and water. That's all I'm going to put in my system. Food and water. No supplements, no powders, nothing."
Johnson has been practicing with the second team and playing in the preseason games while he awaits his fate.
Johnson was the fourth pick in the 2013 draft, the Eagles' highest-drafted player since Donovan McNabb was the second pick in 1999.
Once Johnson’s B sample comes back — presumably positive, since Johnson has admitted taking the supplement — Johnson said he plans to appeal the suspension. But he said he doesn’t expect it to be reduced.
“Even if you prove it (was tainted), there’s nothing you can do,” he said.
It would be unusual for an NFL offensive lineman to not use any supplements at all.
“Look in everybody’s locker,” Johnson said. “Everybody’s got 'em. But you just don’t know what’s really in them.”
Players say supplements help them not only to build strength and muscle but also in their recovery following games.
Johnson insists he can get by without them.
“You’ve got cold tubs, you’ve got different stuff you can do, foam rolling, soft tissue stuff,” he said. “There’s only limited (benefits) with that stuff. I think I’ll be fine.”
Meanwhile, he waits.
“It’s like waiting for an execution date,” he said. “It’s been living hell the past month.”