Cleveland Browns rookie defensive end Armonty Bryant admitted to having a substance abuse problem on Tuesday, according to Mary Kay Cabot of The Plain Dealer. That said, the problem isn't something that's new, nor is it something that is coming out of left field for anyone. Bryant's admission is just one step in staying sober, something he said that he plans to do going forward.
Bryant has been attending the NFL's rookie symposium this week, and among the topics covered is substance abuse. The NFL has ex-players who have dealt with the problem themselves -- including those players that didn't have much of a career due to the addictions.
Bryant said that he thought he was "above the game," and that's one thing that kept him in trouble. He says that they're teaching him that nobody is above the game at the symposium. According to Cabot, Bryant's biggest influence thus far is Chris Herren, who spoke this week about being addicted to crack cocaine, heroin and crystal meth. Herren is a former NBA player who saw his career ruined by those aforementioned drugs.
Cleveland took Bryant in the seventh round of the 2013 NFL Draft, and the young defensive end was arrested on a drunk driving charge less than a week later. Bryant is expected to earn his way onto the practice squad or even the final roster when it's all said and done, but it's safe to say he has to stick to his commitment to sobriety if that's to happen.