A contrite Matt Prater apologized to the Denver Broncos and their fans for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy by drinking beer, resulting in a four-game ban to start the season.
Prater's lawyer said the NFL initially sought a yearlong suspension after Prater tested positive for alcohol consumption while on vacation in the offseason.
Prater, the league's top kicker, has been in the NFL's drug program, which includes alcohol, since a DUI arrest on Aug. 12, 2011. He said he realized one more strike meant he'd face sitting out an entire season when he decided to have some beers "right after the season."
The suspension will cost Prater $705,882 in base salary and forces the Broncos to go with Plan B until their Oct. 12 game against the Jets.