Patriots' Benjamin Watson says he's facing 4-game suspension to start season

Patriots' Benjamin Watson says he's facing 4-game suspension to start season

Benjamin Watson will have to wait to play with the Patriots again.

The veteran tight end announced Sunday that he will be suspended for the first four games of the 2019 season after failing a drug test.

Watson returned to New England this offseason after the Patriots originally selected him in the first round (32nd overall) of the 2004 draft. He planned on retiring after the 2018 season, which he spent with the Saints, but decided to return for another year.

“After my contract expired last March I told my doctors I was finished playing, went through a series of medical tests and was prescribed Bio Identical Testosterone Cypionate to assist in healing my body and mind,” he wrote in a lengthy Facebook post describing the circumstances of his suspension.

“On March 29, nine days after I started therapy, I was randomly tested under our substance policies. I complied out of habit, never thinking in that moment I’d want to come back. In late April, some clubs expressed interest in me playing and after much deliberation and prayer, I decided I wanted to return.

“Considering myself previously retired, I had forgotten all about my test in March until I got a letter on May 3rd saying my results were positive. I was devastated and for obvious reasons did not want to proceed. At that point I knew that my decision to return to play would include a four game suspension and I immediately discussed this new development with the clubs.”

Watson, 38, spent six productive seasons with the Patriots. He logged 167 receptions and 20 touchdowns. Watson then went on to have stints with the Browns, Ravens and Saints.

He played in every game for New Orleans last season and tallied 35 catches for 400 yards and two touchdowns.

In total, he has 530 catches for 5,885 yards and 44 touchdowns over his 15-year career.

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