NFL Suspends Denver Broncos’ Wes Welker for PED Use

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Sept. 2 2014 8:50 PM

NFL Suspends Denver Broncos’ Wes Welker for PED Use

Wes Welker.

Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images

The NFL suspended the Denver Broncos’ Wes Welker for four games on Tuesday after the wide receiver tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs. According to, the positive test was triggered by Welker taking ecstasy—or MDMA—laced with amphetamines while attending the Kentucky Derby in May. Deadspin points out MDMA is itself an amphetamine, “but that would trigger the NFL's recreational drug policy, not its PED policy. So there is a different type of amphetamine in play here.”

While the 33-year-old’s drug of choice, almost certainly wasn’t meant to boost his on field performance, it did seem to enhance his performance at the Derby. While cashing a bet, a Churchill Downs cashier mistakenly overpaid the Broncos star some $15,000, and Welker, as really sweet dudes do, began handing out $100 bills to passersby. According to, the Broncos were aware of the positive test going into training camp, but were hoping Welker could win an appeal with the league.

Elliot Hannon is a writer in Washington, D.C. Follow him on Twitter.


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