New England Patriots receiver Julian Edelman faces a four-game suspension for reportedly violating the NFL's performance-enhancing drug policy, and trainer Alex Guerrero wants it known that he had nothing to do with the alleged violation.
ESPN's Adam Schefter and Field Yates broke news of the ban Thursday. Later in the day, Guerrero released a statement, via NBC Sports Boston's Tom E. Curran, denying any involvement:
Tom E. Curran @tomecurran
From Alex Guerrero..."I’ve known Julian since his rookie year and he is a phenomenal athlete who takes his training seriously—it’s disappointing to hear today’s news. Elite athletes sometimes work with multiple coaches and health professionals as part of their training. 1 of 2
Schefter and Yates reported that Edelman is appealing the suspension, noting the nine-year veteran has taken "hundreds of tests" without testing positive in the past. If he indeed does sit the first four games, he will miss out on $470,588.20 in salary.
Guerrero is notorious for being Tom Brady's personal trainer, a relationship that dates back to 2008 when the Patriots quarterback tore his ACL. The two have worked together ever since and developed the TB12 method.
Known for unconventional regimens, the trainer has worked with plenty of NFL stars through the years. Edelman is among the group to request his services, even calling him "Mr. Miyagi" back in April:
Guerrero has been in the middle of the drama in New England that became public last season. In January, ESPN.com's Seth Wickersham reported there was a power struggle between Brady, coach Bill Belichick and owner Robert Kraft.
That report came not long after Belichick stripped Guerrero of certain privileges. He was no longer allowed to be on the sidelines during games or on the team plane, and Brady was the only player he was allowed to treat at Gillette Stadium.
Now, he is being called into question in regard to Edelman's suspension. Guerrero—who has helped Brady maintain great health over the past decade—has denied any responsibility for the positive test, though.