Cushing claims substance leading to suspension was for mental health

Brian Cushing is back from his 10-game suspension for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs.

The veteran linebacker spoke about the banishment, his second for the policy, for the first time.

Cushing declined to name the specific drug, but claimed a prescription for a mental health issue caused the positive test.

“There was a good amount of things bothering me in this past offseason, most mentally,” Cushing told reporters. “I was given a prescription medication that I probably should have been more careful with and communicated with the league better about.”

He noted some real anxiety about his post-football life. Cushing has suffered several injuries, including a severe concussion in Week 1 which left him hospitalized.

“I hope they understand I had an issue I was trying to better myself with,” Cushing said. “As I’ve gotten older, there’s been a lot of things I’ve been worrisome about, especially with the players that have played and retired and the situations and conditions they’re in. I’m doing really good. I’m extremely excited to be back.”

Allegations of steroid use have dogged Cushing dating back to his college days at USC. The NFL is not obligated to reveal the exact nature of his positive test.

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