- Pat Yasinskas, ESPN Staff Writer
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TAMPA, Fla. -- For the second time this season, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have lost a starting cornerback because of a violation of the NFL's policy on performance-enhancing substances.
Eric Wright will be suspended for the next four games, coach Greg Schiano told the media Monday afternoon.
In a statement released by the team, Wright said Adderall was the cause of the positive test.
"This is a result of taking Adderall at the end of July for health issues I was experiencing," the statement read, according to the Tampa Tribune. "I am extremely disappointed that the suspension was upheld at my appeal."
Wright's four-game suspension for Adderall use follows that of former Buccaneers starting cornerback Aqib Talib, who also was docked four games earlier this season. Talib said he took Adderall without a prescription during training camp. Talib served three games of his suspension before the Buccaneers traded him to New England Nov. 1.
Wright was one of Tampa Bay's big free-agent signings in the offseason. But he's been hampered by an Achilles tendon injury in recent weeks and missed Sunday's game against Atlanta. The Bucs started undrafted rookie Leonard Johnson in his place.
E.J. Biggers took over when Talib was suspended and has remained in the starting lineup, but the Bucs have very little depth beyond that.
Wright, who signed a five-year, $37.5 million contract when he joined the Bucs in March, will lose $1.706 million because of the suspension.
The guaranteed money in Wright's contract for next season is now null and void under the terms of the collective bargaining agreement. Wright is scheduled to make $7.75 million in base salary next season, which no longer is guaranteed. The $7.75 million had been guaranteed for skill and injury. So if the Buccaneers decide to part ways with Wright after this season, this four-game suspension will wind up costing him $9.45 million.
ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter contributed to this report.
2hBy Jackie MacMullan
1dEric D. Williams