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Updated Monday, November 26, 2012 at 06:07 AM

Reports: Suspensions await Brandon Browner, Richard Sherman

By Danny O'Neil
Seattle Times staff reporter

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — Seattle's starting cornerbacks are the cornerstones of its defense.

They are now also question marks.

The Seahawks' Brandon Browner and Richard Sherman each might face four-game suspensions for violating the league's policy on performance-enhancing substances, according to a report by Adam Schefter of ESPN, citing unnamed league sources.

That punishment is being appealed, according to Schefter.

A report on NFL.com reported a source said both players were accused of taking Adderall, which is a combination of dextroamphetamine and amphetamine used to fight attention deficit disorder.

Both players would likely be available for the game next week at Chicago if the punishment is being appealed as reported.

An NFL spokesman said the league had no comment on a report like this. The Seahawks are aware of the report, but are prohibited from talking about the specifics of cases like this under the terms of the league's collective-bargaining agreement.

Sherman and Browner are both in their second years with Seattle. Sherman was a fifth-round draft choice from Stanford while Browner was signed after four years in the CFL. Browner made the Pro Bowl last season, and Sherman was on his way to earning a selection — he leads the team with four interceptions.

Players are tested up to six times in the offseason for banned substances and once in training camp. Each week, up to 10 players per team are randomly tested.

The Seahawks have had three players suspended under the league's policy on performance-enhancing drugs, which calls for a four-game suspension on first violation.

• Guard John Moffitt was suspended four games last year for what his agent said was the use of Adderall without prior approval from the league.

• Offensive lineman Allen Barbre was suspended in the offseason, and sat out the first four games of this season. He was released as soon as he returned from suspension.

• Rookie safety Winston Guy was suspended four games last week.

This policy is different from the policies on substance abuse and player conduct, which had the potential to affect Marshawn Lynch after a drunk-driving arrest in July.

Sherman and Browner were both interviewed after playing Sunday. News of the potential suspensions had not been reported so no one asked about any looming punishment. Instead, the questions focused on Seattle's defeat.

Miami gained 207 yards in the first three quarters, scoring seven points. It gained 228 and scored 17 in the final period. So what did Miami do in that final period?

"Same thing they did all game," Sherman said. "Stayed away from us."

Us?

"Me and him," Sherman said, gesturing toward Browner.

Given the report of a potential suspension, the question now is if the two corners will have to stay away from the Seahawks in the not-too-distant future.

Danny O'Neil: 206-464-2364 or doneil@seattletimes.com.


RHONA WISE / AP
Seattle's Brandon Browner misses this tackle on Miami's Ryan Tannehill. According to reports, Browner and fellow cornerback Richard Sherman face four-game suspensions.




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