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Patrick loses more than games

What ultimately makes a suspension like 's hurt isn't just the loss of playing in games, or even the paycheck (although I am sure Patrick will feel that). It's the loss of practice time. From the NFL's official policy on the subject:

"Players who are suspended under this Policy wil be placed on the Reserve/Commissioner Suspension list. During the period that he is suspended (subject to the preseason activities permitted for Step One violations), the player will not be paid, nor may he participate in team activities, use the Club's facilities or have contact with any Club officials except to arrange for off-site medical treatment."

With Patrick out of the loop for a month -- while he is trying to earn not just a starting job but really, a job in the first place -- that only undercuts his ability to make headway.

EDIT: I have had people ask me if Patrick was already busted once, because he ended up with a four-game suspension. The four-game suspension comes on a second offense only in the league's policy for substances of abuse, i.e., "recreational" type drugs. In those cases, a player must have tested positive once and then get caught a second time for a four-game suspension. In the policy for steroids and related substances -- which is where Patrick's test result fell under -- the first offense is a four-game suspension.

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