The turbulent offseason for David Irving, one of the Dallas Cowboys’ most talented defensive linemen, just got bumpier. It is now being reported that Irving, already suspended for Weeks 1-4 for substance abuse, will miss the start of training camp as he’s currently in a rehab facility.
Since the season ended, Irving had the announced suspension as well as domestic issues with a former girlfriend. The NFL just ruled this week that it would not be pursuing further action on the domestic side, as the accuser has since recanted and no police charges were filed.
However, David clearly has a different demon to deal with now.
Two sources tell @NBCDFWSports @BlueStarBlog that DT David Irving will miss the start of training camp because he’s at a rehab facility. Irving has been suspened for the first 4 games for violating the league’s substance-abuse policy. @1033fmESPN
Last year, Irving was suspended for four weeks for the use of performance-enhancing drugs. These new issues fall under a different policy for illegal substances, which is why he’s not getting a more lengthy suspension. The two offenses are not connected according to NFL rules.
It’s important to note that a four-game suspension falls under “Stage Two” if the NFL’s drug policy. That means Irving had failed previous tests and was under the private intervention program prior to the latest infraction which led to his suspension.
How long David will remain in rehab isn’t known, but the Cowboys will be more concerned with his long-term success than immediate need.
Dallas just got Defensive End Randy Gregory back after a long battle with substance abuse. Hopefully, Gregory’s experience will allow him to be a resource to David Irving during this time.
Irving’s absence from camp, coupled with Maliek Collins’ still recovering from foot surgery, gives several young players opportunities for more work. Richard Ash, Datone Jones, Brent Price, and Jihad Ward will all get more reps now.
While the latest news is disappointing, hopefully it means David Irving is finally getting overdue help and will be in a better place when he does return to football.