- Mike DiRocco, ESPN Jacksonville Jaguars reporter
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Jaguars receiver Ace Sanders is taking a leave of absence to deal with what he called personal issues, but he also admitted he is facing a four-game suspension, which a source close to the team confirmed is for a second violation of the NFL's substance-abuse policy.
Sanders said he probably will not participate in any part of training camp, which opens Friday, and will instead seek counseling.
"I decided to seek the help that I need," Sanders said. "Hopefully somebody can help me out, and I should be fine. It's really like counseling, just from anybody who can really give me some insight on some personal issues that I have. Give me some type of ground that I can at least start from and figure out everything that's going on."
Sanders caught 51 passes as a rookie in 2013 and was expected to compete with rookies Marqise Lee and Allen Robinson for a starting spot alongside Cecil Shorts. He said he will not appeal the suspension.
NFL rules allow Sanders to participate in training camp and the preseason, but he said he thought it was better for him to deal with his issues now.
"I really think that I will come back and be ready to play," Sanders said. "This time that I'm taking just to get everything in order is going to be really helpful. This has been a situation that kind of has been brought out to the light to me for a while, so I had some time to cope with it myself: OK, you messed up, where do you go from here?"
If Sanders returns by the time the season begins, NFL rules allow him to participate in team meetings during his suspension. He cannot practice.
Jacksonville Jaguars receiver Ace Sanders is taking a leave of absence to deal with 'personal issues,' but he is also facing a four-game suspension for a second violation of the NFL's substance-abuse policy