The news of the Martavis Bryant suspension hit Steeler Nation hard on Saturday, and now that it’s all but official he won’t take the field in 2016, comes more news about the young wide out.
The news is that the 24-year-old Steelers receiver will be not only appealing his suspension, but also will be checking into a rehab facility to get his life turned around.
His agent spoke to USA Today, and confirmed the news about Bryant:
Facing indefinite banishment for repeat violations of the NFL’s substance abuse policy, Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Martavis Bryant will check into rehab and undergo evaluation for depression issues, one of his agents, Brian Fettner, told USA TODAY Sports.
“We’re all stunned, me included,” Fettner said, shortly after broke news of the ban Saturday. “We clearly miscalculated the issue. His isn’t a party issue. It’s a coping issue and a depression issue, and he’s got to take care of it.”
Fettner confirmed Bryant is appealing the ban, though getting it overturned is seen as a long shot. It stems from multiple missed drug tests, Fettner said, while also acknowledging Bryant has a problem with marijuana.
The multiple missed tests – which count the same as failed tests – explains why Bryant faces banishment for at least one year, rather than a 10-game suspension for his latest violation after serving a four-game suspension to start last season.
“This is the biggest cry for help I’ve ever seen. And that hurts. It hurts us to see,” Fettner said. “He’s 24 years old and he’s got to get right, whatever it is.
Bryant had the chance in the NFL to be one of the more up and coming wide outs, but now all of that is on the back burner, as obviously there’s bigger issues in his life than becoming one of the best receivers in the game.