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NFL suspends Saints DT Thomas

NEW ORLEANS (Dec. 5, 2006) -- Saints defensive tackle Hollis Thomas was suspended for the final four games of the regular season for violating the league's steroid policy.

Thomas, backed by the team, appealed the suspension, which he said was caused by using asthma medication. He uses an inhaler daily and it apparently contained a banned steroid.

Thomas signed this year with New Orleans after playing nine seasons with the Eagles; he missed the 2002 season in Philadelphia with a broken right foot. He's had 43 tackles and four sacks for the Saints and has been an integral part of their 8-4 record, which leads the NFC South.

If New Orleans makes the playoffs, Thomas would be eligible to play. He can be added to the active roster on Jan. 1, 2007, the day after the regular season ends.

The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2006, The Associated Press, All Rights Reserved

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