UPDATE: Falcons waive linebacker Robert James

Robert "The Beast" James gives chase in an exhibition game against Jacksonville on Sept. 2, 2010. (AP Photo/Stephen Morton)

Robert "The Beast" James gives chase in an exhibition game against Jacksonville on Sept. 2, 2010. (AP Photo/Stephen Morton)

UPDATE

The Falcons waived  linebacker Robert James on Tuesday.

EARLIER

FLOWERY BRANCH – Falcons linebacker Robert James reported back to the team at 9:30 a.m. on Monday.

He missed the first four games of the season for violating the NFL policy on performance-enhancing substances.

“What it was, I went to a doctor back in Phoenix,” James told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.  “They drew my blood and said my testosterone level was low. They give me a shot to boost it back up. I was told it was a natural substance and that it wasn’t going to hinder anything or violate any rules.”

But the shot did have something in it to violate the policy?

“Yes, yes,” James said.

James, 26, spent his suspension back home in Phoenix. He returned to Atlanta on Sunday night. The team said they had a roster exemption and would make a decision on James by the end of the week.

“I’m happy to be back in the building and getting back into the swing of things,” James said. “It was hard not being able to be here with my teammates. It was something that I had to do. I had to go back home and get my body back in shape and be ready to come back.”

The team has not told him if he has a role on the team. Before the suspension he had a shot at landing a roster spot as a backup linebacker and special teams player.

“I was just told to be back in the building today at 9:30 and I’m here,” James said when asked if he was told of his role.

James was picked in the fifth round (138th overall) of the 2008 draft out of Arizona State. He missed his rookie season after suffering a concussion.

He spent the majority of 2009 on the practice squad before being promoted to the 53-man roster on Dec. 29, 2009.

“It’s been difficult after practicing all of the camp with them and going through OTAs and everything to where you couldn’t even be in the building,” James said. “It was kind of hard.”

James has exceptional speed and striking ability. With Jason Snelling taking on a more prominent role in the offense, the special teams unit needs another top flight coverage man.

“I’m willing to do whatever they need me to do,” James said. “I will contribute in any why that I can.”

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82 comments Add your comment

Mike Salmon

October 5th, 2010
7:41 am

I don’t like his excuse. For real? He went to a doctor and got injected with a banned substance? In this day and age of team support networks and agents, can that happen?:

waynester

October 5th, 2010
7:54 am

Mike
Seems like stretch to me, too but I’m glad he’s back(hopefully wiser) ready to work hard and(again hopefully) contribute on special teams, where we really could use a boost….

uga_b

October 5th, 2010
8:21 am

I don’t really care about the excuse as long as he admits he did it. That is the bigger issue. However, not many of us question our doctor any harder than we question our bartenders/

kdbanks01

October 5th, 2010
8:53 am

Dude’s a practice squad player/borderline special teams guy. Of course he’s going to take whatever he can to make him a better player, and who’s to blame him? I’d do the same thing. I just hope his gamble pays off with playing well on Sundays.

Native Georgian

October 5th, 2010
9:01 am

My biggest issue is whether or not he’s capable as a clean player.

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by How I C It Sports, D. Orlando Ledbetter. D. Orlando Ledbetter said: Exclusive: Robert James talks about his suspension http://bit.ly/acydZN [...]

ALEXANDER

October 5th, 2010
9:13 am

Garbage, for the honest athletes he competes against, his cheating means alot. uga-b , you need adifferent doctor ( or stay away from bars!)

In The Know

October 5th, 2010
9:38 am

First of all, I have low testosterone and take shots for it regularly. The questionable part of his story is that one shot “ain’t gonna do it”. Second, if he indeed has low testosterone why not have his doctor write the league with his medical opinion. For those of us with low “t”, it is a necessary hormone needed for many things in your body. I hate to think where I would be if I had not been taking these shots – for 40 years!
I hope this will help some of you to form an opinion from knowledge and not be completely judgmental.

Post-It

October 5th, 2010
9:42 am

PMC

October 5th, 2010
9:47 am

An NFL athlete whose testosterone is low? I’m calling boosh on the Dr.

drew

October 5th, 2010
9:48 am

Anyone with the nickname, “The Beast”, gets my nod of approval.

D Money

October 5th, 2010
9:49 am

If this guy is telling the truth and his doctor can vouch for him, then fine. However, I’m not sure who they would cut to get him on the field…Adkins? At best he’ll go to the practice squad.

Willy

October 5th, 2010
9:53 am

Mike Salmon, exactly! It’s 2010 and it seems unlikely that any doctor would inject an NFL player with an illegal substance, especially if they talked about it. Instead of Phoenix, he should have said he was in Mexico or Guatemala and had to get a tetanus shot or something.

@ in the know – haha, gurly man

In The Know

October 5th, 2010
9:54 am

PMC – It has nothing to do with playing ball.

isproab

October 5th, 2010
9:55 am

First off he is a guy on the bottom of the roster who is not vital to the team success. If the Falcons like him and his story checks out, I would welcome him back. It is well known that there are over the counter medications that will cause you to fail an NFL drug test. I don’t think every instance of a banned substance violation is an attempt to scam the system.

Being an educated individual, if it were me and I heard “testosterone shot” I would immediately ask the team doctor to check out what the shot would do to possible drug test results. Either way, Falcons will make the call they feel is best.

In The Know

October 5th, 2010
9:58 am

Willy – you are one ignorant a$$. Open mouth and the ignorance spews out.

mike

October 5th, 2010
10:09 am

There seems to be a great number of medical specialist’s on here.

Samuel

October 5th, 2010
10:15 am

We need anybody to help us with special teams, the Falcons aren’t that good yet. If we could get Kieth Armstrong to convey to the guys- that It’s Imperative special teams has to win games sometime.

eaassyy

October 5th, 2010
10:20 am

give some to the braves so they can win a game in the playoffs

HGN

October 5th, 2010
10:27 am

The dude is back. We need another special team player to strengthen that unit. He could best serve in that capacity if Snelling is going to be getting more carries. Leave the man alone and lets wish him and The Falcons well. Lie , or no lie , I agree, when we go to the doctor and he gives us a shot we don’t know whats in that needle.

Lets give him the benefit of the doubt. At least he didn’t get caught with some illegal drugs and swear he didn’t know where they came from even though it was in his car….

Falcon Jim

October 5th, 2010
10:29 am

Willy – What’s with you? Are you twelve years old?

GregKennesaw

October 5th, 2010
10:33 am

So if they keep James, who gets cut?

dawgforlife

October 5th, 2010
10:33 am

if he can help the team, he’s paid his debt. but, that lame excuse is almost insulting to the intelligence. For one, the Falcons have a team doctor and take team physicals. This low testosterone would have been caught in house at some point.

GregKennesaw

October 5th, 2010
10:34 am

He is a LB, and we have 2 LB’s hurt right now, that alone might buy him some time

GregKennesaw

October 5th, 2010
10:36 am

Team roster is full, do we have practice squad positions open? If not someone will be cut to keep him

Sid

October 5th, 2010
10:39 am

I don’t know if this guy is telling the truth or not, nor do I care. If tiny little Ben Rothlisberger would stay out of the Viagara and booze maybe he wouldn’t get suspended too. Interesting, a 4 game suspension for a first offense banned substance in James case and an equal 4 game suspension for a second offense of a sexual assault in Rothlisbergers case. In James case I doubt he will repeat the offense, in Rothlisbergers case would ALL the women please come forward. Our special teams needs some help, give him a spot!

D. Orlando Ledbetter

October 5th, 2010
10:39 am

Greg — roster and squad are full. Someone would have to go (maybe RB G. Johnson)

Yep Yep

October 5th, 2010
10:47 am

First I hope he’s telling the truth. If not, I hope he has this type of thing behind him. I’m all for him doing well and helping the team where needed. But let’s be serious for a moment. Do we really think that he is the only player in the NFL with low T. There must be a common shot that those with low T get on a consistent basis but we are to believe that he is the only one who got a shot with an illegal substance in it. NOT. COME ON MAN!!!!!!!! At any rate, I wish him well.

Sid

October 5th, 2010
10:56 am

Is Steve Hauschka on the roster? He is listed on the roster as a place kicker.

D. Led…………..I’d like to see Johnson stay.

Sid

October 5th, 2010
11:00 am

Testosterone is anabolic, meaning it builds up bone and muscle mass.

Recent estimates show that approximately 13 million men in the United States experience testosterone deficiency and less than 10% receive treatment for the condition.

Studies have shown that men with obesity, diabetes, or hypertension may be twice as likely to have low testosterone levels.

Buzz

October 5th, 2010
11:39 am

Wiley I thought it was funny!!! MEXICO BABY!!! Not Ron Mexico…..

Buzz

October 5th, 2010
11:40 am

Sorry I meant WILLY!!!

Your Comment Here

October 5th, 2010
12:03 pm

If he went to the doctor and they drew blood to see he had a low testosterone level, he must have been having some erection problems, due to all the steroids he’d been taking for so long.

Kenny D

October 5th, 2010
12:15 pm

I hope the Falcons don’t blow this with James, he can add more depth to Special Team or Defense position.

Joe Tess Fish House

October 5th, 2010
12:17 pm

Great…..Another wasted rooster spot for a drug user.

Saints LSU

October 5th, 2010
12:18 pm

the falcons has a good team but the saints will win the NFC south falcons get a wildcard

Falcon Jim

October 5th, 2010
12:35 pm

Saints LSU, go back to your craw-dad hunting.

bob

October 5th, 2010
12:35 pm

I hope James comes back. The Falcons special teams play hasn’t been up to par this year. Is someone new coaching it this year? I also would like to see them put Schillinger at wide receiver if he can catch. He is one of the fastest guys on the team and could add a deep threat. Atlanta could use him like New England uses Welker and drag him across the middle.

GregKennesaw

October 5th, 2010
12:40 pm

ELDERFJC

October 5th, 2010
12:51 pm

Thanks for the rest of the “untold story” Mr. Ledbetter. Now, can we please get back to work on the rest of the season? Let’s go Falcons!!!!!!!! Have a great season & post season.

Chucktown

October 5th, 2010
12:57 pm

I often wonder how PRO football, baseball players etc, can be so stupid with things such as drugs, guns, beating their wife and\or killing their girlfriend then stuffing her into a trunk of a car, standing on a street corner stabbing someone, killing and fighting dogs. Then I read what people write in this blog, rub my head while comming to the understanding their all the same kind of people. Some are just more public than others.I really am starting to believe 80% of America are the type you would see on stage of Jerry Springer we all know what a train wreck that is.

Falcon Jim

October 5th, 2010
1:12 pm

Chucktown, so we can assume YOU don’t live in a glass house.

WJ

October 5th, 2010
1:25 pm

Yes folks it is very possible for a doctor to inject the man with a drug that is banned by the NFL. The fact that it is banned by the NFL doesn’t make it an illegal drug for doctors to use. NFL players are simply banned from using it. I say, either make them illegal by the law, or leave it alone at the Sports level. It seems to me as if the courts and the sports programs could come to an agreement.

tim

October 5th, 2010
1:30 pm

I don’t believe a word that ANY athletes say…..

Most used to be trusted…..now, very few are. A bunch of liars!

NO1 PICK

October 5th, 2010
2:29 pm

Im so sure this “doctor” was in his HMO…LOL

Yep Yep

October 5th, 2010
2:43 pm

The Dr. must have been a Cardinal fan. hehehehehe

Key Man

October 5th, 2010
2:45 pm

I could care less what legal substance an athlete puts in their body. They are grown men for goodness sake. This business about athletes being role models is crap.

Falconian

October 5th, 2010
2:50 pm

Who cares. I didnt even know this guy was a Falcon to begin with.

ELDERFJC

October 5th, 2010
2:53 pm

“TO FURTHER CLARIFY MY RECENT POST”….Thanks for giving us the rest of the “untold story” Mr. Ledbetter. James deserved an opportunity to tell hs side as well as dispel all speculation and rumor (which is something that I see a lot of here today). Now, can we please get back to work on the rest of the season? Wishing you all the best success Rob James. Let’s go Falcons!!!!!!!! Have a great season & post season. @ “bob” I am with you on hoping James comes back to help the special teams play. They really can use his talents.

Blanket Statements

October 5th, 2010
3:47 pm

Must have been Tracy Jordan’s doctor- Dr, Spaceman.