The Tampa Bay Bucs will have to compete in their final month of the season without one of their brightest stars.
Middle linebacker Kwon Alexander will start serving his suspension for performance-enhancing drugs.
Alexander, the only player the Bucs have drafted on defense since coach Lovie Smith took over, had been a starter throughout the season. He has three sacks, two interceptions and two forced fumbles to go with his 93 tackles.
Alexander has blamed his positive test on an energy drink.
The suspension comes just as the Bucs’ season is getting interesting. The Bucs have won three of their last four games and are at 6-6 for the season, one game out of the playoffs.