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Denver Broncos Hall of Famer Shannon Sharpe is honored with his "ring of fame" at half time of the Denver Broncos game against the Cincinnati Bengals Sunday September 18, 2011 Sports Authority Field at Mile High. John Leyba, The Denver Post

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Shannon Sharpe Explains Why Antonio Gates’ Legacy is Tarnished

Shannon Sharpe explains why Antonio Gates cheated the game

In the wake of Antonio Gates four-game suspension for violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs, hall of fame tight end Shannon Sharpe decided to share his thoughts.

“It calls into question everything that he’s ever accomplished,” Sharpe said. “If he does it at the beginning of his career because he was an undrafted free agent, people are gonna say he did it to get in the league. Now he did it Year 13, Year 14 — People are going to say he did it to remain in the league. It does, it makes you question everything someone has ever accomplished.”

However, Gates claims it was all a misunderstanding.

 In my 12 years in the NFL, I have taken tremendous pride in upholding the integrity of the NFL shield and all it entails. I have taken extreme care of my body with a holistic approach and I have never knowingly ingested a substance that was banned by the NFL. In an effort to recover from this past season, I used supplements and holistic medicines, and unfortunately, I have now learned that those substances always present a risk because they main contain banned substances even if the ingredient list doesn’t reflect them. As an NFL veteran and team leader, I should have done my due diligence to ensure that what I was taking for recovery was within the NFL guidelines. I understand that I am responsible for what was in my body and I have always believed that ignorance is no excuse when it comes to these issues. I take full responsibility for my actions. I’d like to express my sincere apologies to the Chargers, my teammates, coaches, fans and the league who have always supported me and expected and gotten nothing but the highest level of integrity from me.

Gates could be telling the truth, but none of that will matter at this point.



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