Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Buccaneers RB Kenjon Barner receives four-game PED suspension

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers assumed they'd be without running back Kenjon Barner for Thursday night's game against the Chicago Bears. 

Team officials probably weren't fully aware of the reason at the start of the week. 

Tampa Bay disclosed on Tuesday that the NFL has suspended Barner for the next four games due to an undisclosed violation of the league's policy on performance-enhancing substances. Barner will miss Thursday's contest as well as matchups with the Green Bay Packers, Las Vegas Raiders, and New York Giants. 

He will next be available when the Bucs play the New Orleans Saints in Week 9. 

As Jenna Laine noted for ESPN, Tampa Bay elevated Barner from the practice squad the past two weeks. He suffered a concussion in last Sunday's come-from-behind victory over the Los Angeles Chargers and was unlikely to take the field on Thursday. 

Both Leonard Fournette and LeSean McCoy carried ankle injuries into the midweek, but Tampa Bay coach Bruce Arians told reporters on Tuesday that Fournette may be available against the Bears. 

"He has made some improvement," Arians said. "We might run some tomorrow -- we've been all walkthroughs up to this point -- so we'll see how he is tomorrow. He'll probably be a game-time [decision] guy."

Fournette didn't play last weekend because of the setback. He's tallied 123 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 24 attempts with the Bucs. 

Zac Wassink is a football and futbol aficionado who is a PFWA member and is probably yelling about Tottenham Hotspur at the moment. Erik Lamela and Eli Manning apologist. Chanted for Matt Harvey to start the ninth inning of Game 5 of the 2015 World Series at Citi Field. Whoops. You can find him on Twitter at @ZacWassink

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