The four-game suspension of Brandon Spikes has been confirmed by multiple outlets, including NFL Network's Albert Breer, and it will go into effect Sunday when the New England Patriots play at the Chicago Bears.
Spikes apparently considered appealing but didn't want to risk missing any games in the playoffs -- a four-game suspension starting this weekend means he'll be cleared to play by the postseason.
Via the Patriots official Twitter, Spikes released his statement:
"I've been contacted by the NFL and informed that I will be suspended 4 games for the detection of an illegal substance in a drug test. The substance was a medication that I should have gotten clarification on before taking. It was not a performance enhancer or an illegal drug. The integrity of the game is very important to me. I understand the league's ruling and apologize to my teammates, the fans and the Patriots organization for this mistake."
The NFL has said suspension is classified as "performance enhancing." Spikes will be eligible to return on Jan. 3, the day after the Patriots' regular season finale. Until then, he is not allowed to practice or attend the team's facility.