Rams get linebacker Vobora back from suspension

BY foxsports • October 29, 2009

St. Louis Rams linebacker David Vobora took the majority of snaps with the first string Wednesday in his first practice since a four-game suspension for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy. The second-year player said Wednesday he did nothing wrong and plans to file a lawsuit over the matter. "The system is difficult because I made every move I possibly could to check on certain supplements, got it checked out a number of times through the NFL hotline, and they told me there was nothing that could possibly trigger positive tests," Vobora said. Vobora said he was informed of the pending suspension in July and dropped his appeal of the decision. Vobora accepted the penalty after sustaining a concussion against the Packers, which would have sidelined him for a week anyway. Vobora said he's spoken to players who have used the same supplement without getting suspended. He said he would advise teammates that you can never be too careful. "If you call the hotline and say 'I've got a broccoli supplement,' they're going to say, 'Well, there's nothing in broccoli that would test positive, but you still take it at your own risk."' Vobora became a starter after being the final pick of the 2008 draft. He thanked the Rams for supporting him after he explained the situation to coach Steve Spagnuolo and general manager Billy Devaney. During the suspension, Vobora said he worked out three times a day and watched the winless Rams' games on television. St. Louis plays at Detroit on Sunday. "It was the hardest thing I've ever gone through," Vobora said. "It was definitely a humbling experience. It was a few times when it was hard not to tear the TV off the wall." Spagnuolo said Vobora looked good his first day back. "He had some fresh legs," the coach said. "He did some kickoff stuff with the special teams and he was ahead of everybody." The Rams also signed long snapper Ryan Neill to replace Chris Massey, lost for the season with a knee injury in Sunday's 41-7 loss to the Colts. Neill, who played for the Bills in 2007-08, prevailed in a four-player tryout Tuesday. He was cut in training camp and got the thumbs up from St. Louis punter Donnie Jones and kicker Josh Brown. "When you're with somebody for 2 1/2 years and all of a sudden you've got to switch, of course it's going to be different," Jones said. "But things happen and you've got to adjust."

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