The Cardinals lost a significant member of their offense before the 2022 season even began when it was announced that DeAndre Hopkins would miss the first six games of the campaign due to a PED suspension. The wideout originally withdrew his appeal of the ban, but he remains hopeful that its length can ultimately be reduced.
When speaking publicly for the first time since the suspension was handed down, Hopkins said, “We’re still doing some research right now” (video link via 12News’ Cameron Clark). “Hopefully, before the season starts, maybe we can get the games down a little bit. But no, it wasn’t on me. I’m a natural. I’m pretty much a naturopathic kind of person… And what it was, it was called Ostarine, and there was 0.1% of it found in my system.
“I don’t take any supplements… I barely take vitamins. So for something like that to happen to me, obviously, I was shocked. But my team and I, we’re still trying to figure out what’s going on.”
Kevin Patra of NFL.com notes that any reduction is “unlikely” at this point, given that the official announcement of the suspension would have been made after the opportunity for an appeal had come and gone. It remains all-but guaranteed, then, that Arizona will be without the three-time All-Pro to begin the season, extending his absence from the field dating back to the injuries which kept him sidelined at the end of the 2021 campaign.
Hopkins is confident that he will be fully recovered by the time he is eligible to return. In the meantime, the Cardinals will rely on Marquise Brown, whom they traded for at the draft, and former second-rounder Rondale Moore, who flashed potential as a rookie last year. Upon his return, Hopkins will add to that pass-catching corps, giving Arizona a chance to take a step forward in terms of offensive consistency throughout the season.