Detroit Lions running back Jahmyr Gibbs is having a strong rookie season. The former Alabama football star has rushed for 872 yards in 13 games so far this year.
On Sunday, Gibbs delivered another solid performance, rushing for 80 yards and scoring two touchdowns in a win over the Minnesota Vikings. The Christmas Eve victory clinched the division title for the Lions for the first time since 1993.
After the game, Gibbs returned to his locker and found an unexpected message from the NFL stating that he had been randomly selected for a league-issued drug test.
Gibbs has been a key part of the Lions’ turnaround this season. He has provided a good compliment to veteran running back David Montgomery.
Gibbs also caught four passes for 20 yards during Sunday’s win.
A post to Gibb’s Instagram Story showed a note taped to a locker requesting his immediate presence at the “drug-testing area.”
“You have been selected by the NFL drug-testing program’s Independent Administrator to complete a performance enhancing substances test today,” the notice reads. “Please report to the drug-testing area ASAP to meet with the Doping Control Officer (DCO) and discuss the testing process.”
There is certainly no clear link between Gibbs’ strong performance and the mandatory drug test.
A player receiving notification that they must take a drug test is considered standard practice in the NFL. If a player declines to take the test, it is typically consider as a positive result and can carry serious penalties.
The Lions selected Gibbs in the first round of this year’s draft. He has since moved past the late Mel Farr for the fifth-most yards from scrimmage by a rookie in a single season.
In January, the Lions will host the first-ever home playoff game at Ford Field.