Golden Tate will have his appeal of a four-game suspension for violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing substances heard in New York City on Tuesday, Giants coach Pat Shurmur confirmed on Monday.
Shurmur said Tate is scheduled to practice with the team during its morning workout, which will begin at about 10:45 a.m., though he might have to leave early for his appointment across the river at NFL headquarters.
“It’s kind of an important thing,” Shurmur said.
There seems little chance that Tate’s suspension will be overturned. The veteran receiver said in a statement that he is appealing the decision because the positive test was a result of his alerting the independent testing administrator that he had taken a prescribed drug as part of a family fertility regimen. Tate admitted in his statement on July 27 that he did take the drugs without checking to see if there were any banned substances in them, then stopped when he realized there were.
Tate has not spoken publicly since the suspension was first reported almost two weeks ago, but he has had a strong training camp in his first season with the Giants.
“He’s showed us what his reputation was,” Shurmur said. “He has a way of getting open in the short area. Even though we’re not tackling to the ground, you can see that he’s got good run after catch. He’s very smart, so we can move him around. All of the things that are necessary to play in our offense.”
The Giants and Tate should know the outcome of the appeal shortly. Even if the suspension is upheld, Tate will be allowed to participate with the team in training camp and in preseason games. His suspension would begin in Week 1 of the regular season.
That cloud understandably tempers a lot of the enthusiasm that otherwise would be accompanying Tate’s training camp performance. Shurmur said he still holds out hope that the suspension will be overturned.
“I wake up enthusiastic every morning that they’re all going to be there and be at full strength,” he said. “We’ll just kind of deal with it as we go.”
Notes & quotes: Defensive lineman B.J. Hill was excused from Monday’s practice for the birth of his son . . . Safety Michael Thomas and long snapper Zak DeOssie were excused from practice to attend to NFL Players Association matters. Both are on the union’s executive committee . . . Guard Austin Droogsma, the shot putter from Florida State who had not played organized football since high school before signing with the Giants in the spring, was released on Monday. The Giants signed guard Malcolm Bunche to replace him.