The Arizona Cardinals remain optimistic the NFL will decrease its suspension for wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, according to ESPN's Jeremy Fowler.
Fowler reported the team believes there's still a chance Hopkins' six-game ban could be reduced to four games. The league suspended him for violating its performance-enhancing drug policy.
Per Fowler, the NFL Players Association described the topic as a "moot issue," so the odds of the suspension getting amended appear to be slim.
The Cardinals didn't take any chances, acquiring Marquise Brown and a third-round pick from the Baltimore Ravens for their 2022 first-rounder.
While Arizona had lost Christian Kirk to free agency, that was a surprisingly aggressive move for a team that already had Hopkins, A.J. Green and Rondale Moore. Hopkins' suspension provided added context, assuming the team knew it was in the offing.
Jonathan Jones @jjones9
The NFL is suspending Cardinals All-Pro WR DeAndre Hopkins for six games for a violation of the league's PED policy, source confirms. <a href="https://twitter.com/AdamSchefter?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@AdamSchefter</a> first on it.<br><br>Explains the high price paid for Hollywood Brown. Expect a reliance on Zach Ertz in his first full year with the team.
Hopkins told reporters in June he was weighing all of his options and denied knowingly taking a banned substance.
"I'm a natural. I'm pretty much a naturopathic kind of person," he told reporters. "It's called Ostarine and there was 0.1 percent of it found in my system and if you know what that is, it's contamination and not something directly taken."
The three-time All-Pro echoed those comments in July and lamented what he called the NFL's "very black and white" policies toward banned substances.
Barring a late change, Hopkins won't be eligible to suit up until Arizona's Week 7 clash with the New Orleans Saints.