Indianapolis Colts tight end Weslye Saunders has been suspended for the first eight games of the season for violating the league's policy on performance-enhancing substances, the NFL announced on Thursday.
The suspension is eight games because it's Saunders' second violation of the league's PED policy. The 24-year-old was also suspended for the first four games of the 2012 season. A third violation would result in a 12-month suspension.
The third-year tight end won't be eligible to return until after Indianapolis' Nov. 3 division showdown with Houston. However, Saunders will be allowed to practice with the team through training camp and play in any of the Colts' four preseason games.
Saunders is going into his second season with the Colts. As a newcomer in 2012, he played in nine games -- started four -- and caught a total of two passes for 15 yards. Before joining the Colts, Saunders spent one season in Pittsburgh.