IRVING, Texas – Cornerback Orlando Scandrick has been cleared to rejoin the Cowboys.
Scandrick served two games of a four-game suspension before the NFL overturned its old drug policy in a joint announcement with the NFL Players Association on Wednesday morning. The NFLPA voted for the new policy on Friday night, but the league didn't rule on it until this week.
To move Scandrick onto the active roster, the Cowboys will place offensive tackle Darrion Weems on season-ending injured reserve.
Scandrick was suspended under the old performance-enhancing drugs policy. Under the new policy, Scandrick's first-time positive test for amphetamines in the offseason counts under the substance abuse policy, and he wouldn't get an automatic four-game suspension.
The Cowboys and Broncos have followed the new agreement closely, as they're among those most immediately affected by it, with Scandrick and Wes Welker both getting their suspensions reduced or lifted. A release by the NFLPA last Friday stated that certain violations during the year could be adjusted to fit the new policy.
Also of interest to the Cowboys is that suspended wide receiver Stedman Bailey of the St. Louis Rams, this week's opponent, has been cleared from his suspension due to the changes, as well.
Aside from those policy [embedded_ad]
changes, the new agreement will implement testing for HGH, effective within the next few weeks. On top of that, appeals of positive tests in the performance enhancing drug programs (including HGH) will be heard by third-party arbitrators jointly selected and retained by the NFL and NFLPA. Appeals will be processed more expeditiously under improved rules and procedures.
Scandrick was a standout during training camp for the Cowboys and is the most tenured cornerback on the team. He finished with two interceptions and two sacks last season. Defensive end Jeremy Mincey said it'll mean a lot to get Scandrick back.
"You're talking about a guy who could blitz and cover," Mincey said. "He has a knack for making plays. It would definitely be a great positive to have Orlando back. Right now, we're just holding it down for him the best we can do."