Jets end not subject to suspension

Updated: August 24, 2004, 6:11 PM ET
By Len Pasquarelli | ESPN.com

New York Jets defensive end John Abraham, who might have violated the terms of his aftercare treatment, will meet with league officials Wednesday to appeal the findings of a recent random test.

John Abraham
Defensive End
New York Jets
Profile
2003 SEASON STATISTICS
Tot Ast Solo FF Sack Int
32 25 7 1 6 0

Even if the positive test is upheld, Abraham is not subject to suspension. As a second-time offender, he could be fined a maximum of four game checks, or $342,352, based on his 2004 salary of $1.455 million. He could be subject to suspension for any future violations if the current charge against him is upheld.

Test results allegedly indicated that Abraham, a fifth-year veteran, had high levels of alcohol in his system. Abraham entered the substance abuse program last October following a drunken driving arrest. Under terms of the program, he can be randomly tested 10 times per month and the league can put guidelines in place to restrict his alcohol consumption.

Citing confidentiality policies, neither the NFL nor Jets officials would comment on the charges. Abraham's agent, Tony Agnone, denies his client failed the test. Some published reports the last few days suggested Abraham took a polygraph test, and passed, and that he will present that report to league officials.

Agnone insists that the issue Abraham is facing with the league won't interfere with his abilities on the field during the upcoming season.

While his long-term future with the Jets is tenuous, since he is in the final season of his original contract, Abraham is key to the new scheme implemented by first-year defensive coordinator Donnie Henderson. Primarily an end during his career, Abraham is also being used at linebacker in some 3-4 fronts.

One of the Jets' four choices in the first round of the 2000 draft, Abraham's development has been slowed by injuries the past couple of seasons, but he remains a consistent sack threat.

Abraham was arrested last Oct. 1 in Baldwin, N.Y., after driving his Hummer into a utility pole. He was charged with driving while intoxicated after police measured his blood-alcohol level at 0.26 percent, more than three times the legal limit in New York, and eventually pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of driving while impaired.

Since then, Edwards has called Abraham "a model citizen."

"He has done everything anyone has asked him to do," Edwards was quoted as saying Tuesday. "John is a good guy. He is not a criminal."

Len Pasquarelli is a senior writer for ESPN.com.