Alabama Team News

Alabama LB Reuben Foster says he failed drug test at NFL Combine

Reuben Foster
Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports

Former Alabama linebacker Reuben Foster failed a drug test at the NFL Combine last month, he told NFL.com on Thursday.

Per NFL policy, the diluted urine sample will be treated like a positive test.

Foster, who said he notified NFL.com about the results to get out ahead on something that was “going to get out,” explained that he was sick before the Combine and took medication from a doctor in order to stay hydrated as opposed to failing the test because of drug use.

“I couldn’t eat much, but I had to drink water and Gatorade,” Foster said. “Then a few coaches said something about me being too light. And I’m a coach-pleaser. I don’t care what everybody thinks, but I care what coaches think.

“So I drank and ate as much as I could without throwing up. Then I went in there, drinking and drinking water, trying to flush out my system from whatever was making me sick and trying to keep my weight up and took the test.”

Foster, who believes he had food poisoning, said he had been offered IVs to hydrate, but he didn’t want to do that.

RELATED: Analyst: Alabama linebacker Reuben Foster compares to Hall of Famer

Foster admitted that the failed drug test likely will negatively affect his draft stock. He has mostly been projected as a first-round pick who possibly could as high as the top 10, though at least some NFL executives believe he could slide in the draft because of “some character concerns and poor interviews.”

“If it’s first round, second round, whoever takes me will get a good football player and an All-Pro,” Foster said. “I hope I go on Thursday, but I can’t control that.”

Foster also notably was sent home early from the NFL Combine after getting into a shouting match with a hospital worker. He was not slated to participate in drills regardless at the event as he continued to recover from rotator cuff surgery on his right shoulder at the time, though it was an opportunity for him to meet with teams.

Afterward, Foster sent an apology to all 32 NFL teams for the incident and rescheduled a meeting with them in Tuscaloosa ahead of Alabama’s March 8 pro day, where he reportedly impressed.

Last season, Foster won the Butkus Award as the nation’s top linebacker and was a unanimous first-team All-American. He finished his senior season with 115 tackles (13 for loss), five sacks, two passes defended and eight quarterback hurries.

RELATED: Is Reuben Foster Nick Saban’s best linebacker prospect?

(You can follow Kevin Connell on Twitter @_KevinConnell)

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