ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP) – Detroit wide receiver Charles Rogers was suspended Wednesday for four games for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy, the latest setback to an injury-plagued career.

The announcement game in a two-sentence statement from the league.

“I will make no excuses for what I did, and I accept full responsibility for my actions,” Rogers said in a statement released by the Lions. “I let down a lot of people, mainly myself.”

The suspension is the latest in a series of problems for the second overall choice in the 2003 draft, who missed much of his first two seasons after breaking his right collarbone twice.

Rogers apologized to teammates and coaches at a team meeting Wednesday.

“He’s not shying away from anything or what happened – he feels bad obviously,” receiver Mike Williams said. “He apologized to our group as well as the team.”

In Rogers’ locker, a piece of paper with the message, “He Is Not Available!” was taped on the shelf. His agent, Kevin Poston, did not return repeated calls by The Associated Press.

“He knew what he was doing,” offensive tackle Jeff Backus said. “It’s a letdown, but we move forward.”

The Lions signed Rogers to a six-year contract with a signing bonus of $14.4 million after drafting him.

In three games this season, Rogers has caught just five passes for 77 yards. He has 27 career receptions for 320 yards and three touchdowns in nine games.

After Sunday’s loss at Tampa Bay on Sunday, Rogers said he was confused about his current role in the offense. He wasn’t thrown a pass until the fourth quarter of that game.

Rogers’ first two receptions in his rookie season were touchdowns, and he led Detroit with 22 catches for 243 yards and three scores after five games before breaking his right collarbone in practice and missing the rest of his rookie season.

In the first quarter of last year’s opener, Rogers broke the same bone and had season-ending surgery.

Receiver Roy Williams said he told Rogers Wednesday morning to keep his head up.

“He looked down, just like any person would when you get something taken away from you, especially that gives you a good paycheck,” Roy Williams said.

Rogers will miss Sunday’s game against Baltimore and three more games before being eligible to return Nov. 6 at Minnesota.

“When he comes back, he’s going to come back like a warrior,” Roy Williams said.

AP-ES-10-05-05 1523EDT


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