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ESPN Reports that the NFL has "asked for additional information" from Jackson


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NEW YORK -- Six players, including the heart of the Minnesota Vikings' stout defensive line, were suspended by the NFL on Tuesday for violating the league's anti-doping policy.

All six were punished for using a diuretic, which can serve as a masking agent for steroids.

The suspended players were running back Deuce McAllister and defensive linemen Charles Grant and Will Smith of New Orleans; defensive linemen Kevin and Pat Williams of Minnesota; and long snapper Bryan Pittman of Houston.

A seventh player, Atlanta's Grady Jackson, was not suspended. NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said league chief counsel Jeff Pash had asked for additional information from Jackson.

The punishment is an especially harsh blow to Minnesota, which leads the NFC North and relies heavily on the two Williamses in its run defense, which ranks second in the league.

A representative for one of the players told ESPN senior analyst Chris Mortensen on Tuesday that there is a plan to file for an injunction in a U.S. District Court Wednesday morning in an attempt to keep the suspended players active for the rest of the 2008 season.

In their appeals, some players said the banned substance Bumetanide was not listed as an ingredient in StarCaps, an over-the-counter weight-loss pill.

In fact, Jackson filed suit against StarCaps in Alameda County Superior Court in California last month, seeking restitution for any lost salary and damages for "false advertising and unfair business practices."

But in issuing the suspensions, the league reiterated the section of its policy that reads:

"You and you alone are responsible for what goes into your body. Claiming that you used only legally available nutritional supplements will not help you in an appeal. ... Even if they are bought over-the-counter from a known establishment, there is currently no way to be sure that they contain the ingredients listed on the packaging or have not been tainted with prohibited substances ...

"If you take these products, you do so AT YOUR OWN RISK! For your own health and success in the league, we strongly encourage you to avoid the use of supplements altogether, or at the very least to be extremely careful about what you choose to take."

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