ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that the NFL has notified teams that Michigan’s Jabril Peppers tested positive for a dilute sample at the combine.
Peppers’ agency released the following statement via Schefter regarding this news:
“Peppers went to the combine. He was sick after flying there from San Diego. He has a history of cramping. Peppers was being pumped with fluids, drinking 8-10 bottles of water before he went to bed, because he was the first guy to work out two days for the LBs and DBs. He had to go through that first day, come back on second day, and that was the fear. So Peppers was pounding water and under the weather. He never failed a drug test in his life, nor tested positive before for any substance.”
The NFL treats dilute samples as a failed drug test, so this is hardly the kind of news NFL teams want to hear a few days before the draft. This also means that Peppers will enter the NFL in the drug program.
Alabama LB Reuben Foster also produced a diluted sample at the Combine and recent reports have mentioned that he could end up dropping in this year’s drop.
Peppers was considered a late first-round talent, so it’s possible this could lead to him falling into round two.
Peppers, 21, is one of the most dynamic players in this year’s draft class and played on both sides of the ball during his college career.
Earlier in the year, many felt that Peppers was likely to be a top-10 pick in the next draft. However, some are now questioning whether he’ll be able to be the same kind of player at the next level and if he would be better off playing either safety or linebacker.
Peppers has met with the Buccaneers, 49ers, Ravens, Saints and Cardinals.
During his college career at Michigan, Peppers recorded 119 tackles, 18.5 tackles for a loss, three sacks, one interception and 11 pass defenses. On offense, Peppers rushed for 239 yards on 45 carries (4.5 YPC) to go along with 10 receptions for 82 yards receiving and five total touchdowns.