Golden Tate
ESNY Graphic, AP Photo

Golden Tate’s appeal on his four-game suspension was denied on Tuesday, and the New York Giants must forge ahead.

Jason Leach

Throughout training camp, Golden Tate has shown everything the New York Giants were expecting when they signed him to a four-year, $37.5 million contract in the offseason.

He’s has shown that despite being 31, he is still a quick and crisp route runner with reliable hands. He also developed a nice rapport with quarterback Eli Manning.

But on Tuesday, an independent arbitrator denied Tate’s appeal of his four-game suspension for the performance-enhancing substance Clomiphene. Tate was using this substance as he and his wife were trying to have another child. Clomiphene can increase sperm count and testosterone in men.

On Wednesday, Tate spoke for the first time since finding out his appeal was denied, and he spoke how the substance he was taking was banned by the NFL.

“A few weeks after my test, I went back and spoke to the doctor. Initially, the doctor said it was not a banned substance,” Tate said about the failed test earlier in camp. “In fact, he had given it to other NFL players, which is why I trusted it and kept living my life. I was out to dinner one night with a guy who worked for me and he started talking about another player who was getting suspended for something completely different. A light went off in my head and I said let me call the doctor to make sure, to make myself feel better. I asked him what the active ingredient was and he looked it up right then and there and sure enough it was a banned substance.”

The suspension of Tate is just another blow to the Giants receiving corps that has already lost Corey Coleman (ACL) and Amba Etta-Tawo (Achilles) for the season. No. 1 receiving option Sterling Shepard has been limited to some degree after fracturing his left thumb in the first practice of training camp, but all signs point to him being on the field Week 1 against the Cowboys.

Although Tate is still allowed to practice and play in the preseason, as his suspension won’t officially begin until Aug. 31, the Giants must start to prepare for life without Tate.

The Giants have three more preseason games. They play Friday at home against the Bears before going on the road to lay the Bengals on Aug. 22. The preseason finale will come in Foxboro against the New England Patriots on Aug. 29.

With the starters unlikely to see any playing time against the Patriots, the Giants should consider having a few series with the first-team offense without Tate on the field against the Bears and Bengals. This way they can get acclimated to him not being on the field the first four weeks.

It’s not to say that Tate shouldn’t play any snaps with the first-team offense over the next two games, but having him out of the lineup for a few series will help Manning and the rest of the offense develop a dynamic without him.

Cody Latimer and Russell Shepard are expected to be in with the first-team offense. When the Giants are in their three and four wide receiver formations they can bring in Bennie Fowler, Alonzo Russell, T.J. Jones, Darius Slayton, and Reggie White Jr. in place of Tate.

Wide receivers coach Tyke Tolbert has a reputation of being one of the best receivers coaches in the league, and all of his receivers know and understand each spot on the field. They’ll be prepared when their number is called upon.

Nobody is going to feel sorry for the predicament the Giants receiving corps faces. They need to have a “next man up” mentality and that starts on Friday night against the Chicago Bears.

Jason's first love was football while growing up in northern New Jersey. For the past three years, he has covered the New York Giants, as well as several boxing events along the East Coast.