Chiefs’ De’Anthony Thomas to sit opener for violating NFL substance abuse policy

Chiefs wide receiver De’Anthony Thomas will miss the regular season opener next Sunday at Jacksonville while serving a one-game suspension for violating the NFL’s policy and program on substance abuse.

Thomas, who has appeared in 55 games over five seasons with the Chiefs, was re-signed by the team on Aug. 20 when the Chiefs lost Marcus Kemp to a torn ACL and MCL.

Thomas’ skills as a special teams performer, in coverage and returns, is why he’s back with the Chiefs.

Chiefs general manager Brett Veach said Saturday the team was aware Thomas would have to serve a suspension when he was signed.

In January, Thomas was arrested for speeding and for suspicion of possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia in Allen County, Kansas.

Thomas, who fractured a leg in the fifth game and missed the rest of last season, said in an interview after rejoining the team that the incident was a “distraction. I didn’t let it interfere with my process. I just kept focus and stayed disciplined in my workouts and now I’m getting back to doing what I do.”

Thomas will be eligible to rejoin the roster on Sept. 9.

This marks the second straight season the Chiefs will play the opener without a player suspended for the substance abuse policy. Tight end Demetrius Harris sat out 2018 opener.

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