According to ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter, New Orleans Saints defensive tackle David Onyemata will serve a one-game suspension for violating the NFL’s substances of abuse policy. This comes after Onyemata was cited for marijuana possession back in March. This will be the first time Onyemata will be suspended since joining the league in 2016. Onyemata has not missed a game with the Saints.
Saints’ DT David Onyemata is being suspended one game for violating the NFL’s substances of abuse policy.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) June 28, 2019
David Onyemata to Serve One-Game Suspension
This will not be a significant blow to the Saints defense. However, the Saints already have a depleted front four. The Saints will be without Sheldon Rankins, who tore his Achilles late last season. Not to mention the Black and Gold lost Tyeler Davidson and Alex Okafor to free agency as well.
Onyemata put forth his best season last year, recording 4.5 sacks, 35 total tackles and four tackles for loss. The Saints are expecting Onyemata to be a key contributor to the defense.
Despite Onyemata’s suspension, the Saints signed two very capable players to fill the role. Malcom Brown is one of them. Brown won two Super Bowls during his time with the New England Patriots. He is not an overwhelming, dominant player, but he has shown the ability to consistently stop the run. During the Patriots playoff run, Brown’s disruption in the run game helped stop both the Rams and the Chiefs rushing attacks.
Another option is defensive lineman Mario Edwards Jr. The 2015 second rounder out of Florida State was drafted by the Oakland Raiders. Edwards has not lived up to his potential yet but should see action immediately in Onyemata’s absence.
The Saints should be able to handle one game without David Onyemata’s presence. Onyemata and the Saints are lucky the suspension wasn’t longer.