Report: Cowboys' Collins appealing suspension, cites excused absences

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Dallas Cowboys right tackle La'el Collins is appealing his five-game suspension for violating the league's substance abuse policy, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports.

Though he'll begin serving the ban Sunday, Collins believes his missed drug tests were due to excused absences.

Collins missed a test last November after the team was sent home the day Cowboys strength and conditioning coach Markus Paul died. He also missed a test the same day of his uncle's funeral, a source told Schefter. The Cowboys reportedly gave Collins permission to leave the team to be with his family.

Additionally, Collins missed a test last October the day he had hip surgery. Although the league counted a positive result for codeine against Collins, he was prescribed the drug following the procedure, per Schefter.

Collins hasn't tested positive for marijuana in the past 18 months. His representation is arguing suspensions aren't permitted for missed tests under the new collective bargaining agreement.

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Report: Cowboys' Collins appealing suspension, cites excused absences
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