Our Mike Fisher, reporting live on 105.3 The Fan at 10:20 a.m. Tuesday with this exclusive-exclusive:
Defensive lineman David Irving is discussing with Dallas Cowboys team officials today the possibility that he’s failed a drug test for supplements, sources tell me.
I’m told the result of the test is not yet “official,’’ and that an appeal can be expected. I’m also told Irving is not presently in the NFL drug program … but that a four-game suspension could nevertheless be looming.
The 6-7, 280-pound Irving, at just 23 a promising member of Dallas’ front-four rotation, recently signed his tender and will play this year on a league-minimum contract, earning and counting just $615,000 against the salary cap. It’s a bargain for a player who was essentially the defensive star of the game twice last season, in wins over Green Bay (in Week 6) and Tampa Bay (in Week 15).
In fewer than 500 snaps last season, Irving totaled 17 tackles, four sacks, four forced fumbles and five passed defensed. He can play end or tackle, and he’s overcome a behavioral problem in college that kept him in the NFL shadows until Dallas plucked him off the Kansas City practice squad two seasons ago.
I’m told there is an “accidental’’ nature to Irving’s use here, and it is hoped - by both the Irving camp and by the Cowboys - that could help in the appeal process.
We'll assume that "accidental'' means Irving didn't know what he was taking, or being given. At the same time, we doubt that ignorance/naivete will serve as a defense here for an overturning of what is apparently the NFL's ruling.