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Neal Suspended For Performance Enhancing Substances

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Neal Suspended For Performance Enhancing Substances

From Howard Balzer:

Amidst the madness, according to league source, Packers DE Mike Neal suspended for for first four games of 2012 season

An NFL spokesman confirmed that Neal is suspended for violating the league's policy on performance-enhancing substances. He is eligible to participate in all offseason workouts and training camp.

As Packers fans know, Neal was coming back from a knee injury he suffered last summer in training camp. When he finally did hit the field during the last part of the season, he looked nothing like the player who showed such promise during training camp in 2010 or in two games against the Lions and Redskins before being placed on injured reserve.

The first thought here is that Neal was trying too hard to come back from his various injuries and took something to try and speed up the process. The unfortunate part is how little difference  he made on the field in 2011.

The Packers were already in need of help at defensive end on their defensive line - they are now in desperate need of said help.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (36) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

pkrNboro's picture

In one late season interview, he talked about the cartilage that was removed from beneath his knee cap...

...I'm no Doctor, but I'm pretty sure that doesn't grow back. So he'll likely play in considerable pain and likely be ineffective.

I'll bet the Pack hang onto him for a year and give the usual song/dance regarding therapy/treatment/hope -- and then let him go after this season...
...all the while getting next to nothing from him.

nerd's phone's picture

How much is still there? You can take glucosamine, collagen, gelatin or best of all imo is bone marrow. Make a broth with some marrow bones. Add cayenne and garlic!

Evan's picture

I know it's Ted we're talking about, but does this change anything in regards to free agency. Not Mario Williams or anything, but maybe it forces his hand a bit to be slightly more aggressive?

pkrNboro's picture

I'm worried that we're going to wear out Raji and Pickett.

I'd bet Green is gone.

Wynn and/or Wilson would be a candidate, too -- they've been around 2+ years and don't seem to have "it" -- but one will stick simply because they don't have anybody else...

bryce's picture

The key statement there being, "I know it’s Ted we’re talking about."

I'd like to see him make a push...but I think TT's goal is just to keep consistently playoff bound teams on the field, and hope it turns into something.

Bearmeat's picture

The DL needs about 3 picks in the first 5 this year. With OLB/C/S getting the remainders.

Damn. Double damn.

Bad day to be a GB fan.

pkrNboro's picture

No worries: we're a "passing" team.

And by God we've got the TEs and WRs to prove it!

FITZCORE1252's EVO's picture

Jesus-F'ing-C.

GBP 4 LIFE

jack in jersey city's picture

ok mike. one more strike buddy....

FITZCORE1252's EVO's picture

Lol.

bryce's picture

Quick, somebody find a way to rhyme "Mike Neal" with any part of the phrase "draft bust". Ready, go!

nerd's phone's picture

Maybe he can use those four games to get healthy.

NoWayJose's picture

Oof.

Aaron, you may be right that this is a rehabilitation thing. But (to speculate), hasn't Neal's thing always been that he is the strongest guy on the team? Plus, it's frequently noted how chiseled/ripped the guy is...

I think there's some reason to worry that this guy has more history here than we'd like to think.

ebongreen's picture

I was already in favor of the Packers looking for DE help through free agency, as well as the draft. This is just one more reason for them to look at 3-4 ends from other teams - which they should be doing anyway.

Whether they'll sign any is another issue.

Packer UK's picture

I feel sorry for him. But have almost lost all hope for him. I pray he turns it around. One DE/DT I really like is Jonathan Fanene from the Bengals. 6.5 sacks last season. Fifth highest for a lineman over 290lbs, and he was only playing a situational role. And he is Soman...I love Soman players

FITZCORE1252's EVO's picture

Maybe we should just throw a first at Pittsburgh, get Wallace to take the top off and out score everybody 45-42. May be easier than this whole idea of playing defense.

GBP 4 LIFE

Zubke's picture

Never thought Neal would end up taking on the attributes of Justin Harrell (can not stay healthy) and Johnny Jolly (drugs)

Lang better brush up on his defensive line skills

jay's picture

I understand the dissapointment, but let's not hit the panic/distress button just yet. Think of the first four games as intense tests for the draft picks and Guy. It's really not even clear he'll be a starter if we land a top notch lineman in the first.

Go Pack Go.

FITZCORE1252's EVO's picture

Jay, he's a 2nd round pick. He's supposed to be a starter going into year three. He's done nothing. I feel my "distress" relating to Neal is warranted. We need some of these.guys to start panning out. Aside from Raji, who was the last GOOD D-lineman we drafted? Serious question... Trying to remember. What makes you confident if we go D-line at 28 he's gonna work out? Ted's track record isn't glowing when it comes to those guys. Which makes it all the more worrisome that the 3rd and 4th year d-lineman don't appear to be ascending.

Oppy's picture

Johnny Jolly and Dave Tollefson in 2006. Corey Williams in 2004.

Other wise, you're right- it's busts or "just guys'.

FITZCORE1252's EVO's picture

I know Tollefson is a rotational guy in New York... Don't know if I personally could put him in the "good" categorie. Seems closer to the "just a guy" categorie, maybe just a step above. Williams and Jolly were good, definitely never great. Maybe this is the year Ted lands his GREAT D-lineman. We know he's gonna try.

aussiepacker's picture

maybe he should draft 5 of them the surely one turns out?

NoWayJose's picture

Jolly may have had some talent as a player... but he was not a "good" draft pick. Good draft picks don't wind up in jail.

Identifying character issues is part of the draft pick. Raiders dont get a pass on Jamarcus Russel, same with Broncos and that RB from Ohio St a few years ago.

Bad pick

Oppy's picture

NoWayJose,

A good Dlineman and a good draft pick could be two different things.

Jolly was, without question, a good D lineman. He had off the field issues. Not on the field issues.

Fitz, I feel both Williams and Jolly were without question good D linemen- you didn't ask for "Great" linemen.. But, yeah, Tollefson was a reach, but then I guess that just re-affirms your point- Packers haven't had much success drafting DL for the most part.

jay's picture

All I'm saying is this: we haven't lost him for the year or anything like that. But there's a lot of factors that I need to know before I distress over a temporary suspension, like what players are drafted, how Guy looks, how Neal himself looks during training camp. Plus, the schedule hasn't been released, so we have no idea how who we face in those four weeks. I have a high bar for stressing out, in other words. Now if you want to be concerned, go for it: you won't get any harsh judgment from me. I'm just taking a different path.

PadLevel's picture

Assuming he is off PEDs now, can he ever play to the required talent level? Reps in offseason and training camp are valuable for player development and I would rather we not waste any more time on this guy. Its not his fault that he was picked in the Second round, perhaps if he was "lucky" to be picked in a later round (say 6th or 7th) he may have had a better chance in the NFL.

Beep's picture

Hate to hear as Neal tries to get things going in the right direction but we're only losing out on "potential". We haven't seen anything substantial on the field.

Hopefully TT can figure out how the NYG are drafting linemen and find someone who is ready.

nerd's phone's picture

Pardon me if I'm wrong but do you get 4 games for a first offense? I thought a first offense was "whiz quiz" and counseling, second was suspension?

Idiot Fan's picture

I think for other drugs (like marijuana) you get a warning for the first offense, but for PEDs its straight to a 4-game suspension.

mark's picture

If you've never actually performed how can they be considered performance-enhancing drugs?

aussiepacker's picture

LOL.

Chazman's picture

Bullseye!

dawg's picture

TT needs performance enhancing substance to learn how to draft big bodies.

Chazman's picture

What if we told TT he was drafting a receiver instead? A big, strong receiver who can tackle and put pressure on the QB? He seems ok with drafting receivers.

bryce's picture

Dude, we were 15-1...the fact that we laid down in the playoffs and Collins got hurt isn't TT's fault.

Chazman's picture

Don't get me wrong, I like TT. But to expect our offense to play lights out every game is unrealistic. We are lacking on the defensive side of the ball, not just Collins which was an injury, but no pass pressure whatsoever. Outside of the 2009 draft (Raji & Matthews) TT doesn't seem to have as much success in drafting on the defensive side of the ball.

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