SMITHFIELD, R.I. -- His teammates wished Terry Glenn well Wednesday after the wide receiver was suspended for the season by the New England Patriots. They also expressed relief the issue was resolved.
''It's just a cancer to us right now,'' defensive back Lawyer Milloy said. ''As a whole, that situation probably needed to die as soon as possible.''
Glenn left training camp Aug. 3, when the NFL suspended him for four games for violating terms of its substance-abuse program. Coach Bill Belichick, who made the decision to suspend him for the season, said Glenn had ''ample opportunity'' to return but didn't.
Players supported Belichick's decision to put the 27-year-old Glenn on the reserve-left camp list, which means he cannot be activated, traded or released during the season.
NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said Glenn would still have to serve the four-game suspension when he returned.
Belichick said he let the issue linger long enough.
''This is about being in training camp and playing football,'' Belichick said. ''I'm going to spend my time and my energy with the players that are here.''
Belichick said the suspension was unrelated to the one by the NFL or Glenn's off-season arrest for domestic assault. He said owner Robert Kraft was ''supportive.''
Glenn signed a six-year, $50 million contract extension last year that included an $11.5 million signing bonus. The team said it won't pay Glenn his salary and will withhold the remaining $8.5 million of the signing bonus.
The Patriots sent a letter to Glenn and his agent, James Gould, on the day he left camp warning that he risked suspension if he did not return in five days.
Gould said he was trying to arrange a meeting when he was told Tuesday that Glenn had been suspended. He said Glenn wanted to return.
Gould said Glenn left camp because he hadn't been paid since June 15, when the Patriots withheld a $1 million payment on the bonus.
''They owe him money and that's why he's not there,'' he said. ''He was at training camp without receiving one penny, yet they felt they had the right to compel him to be there.''
Gould said he will pursue the matter in court.
Linebacker Willie McGinest said the team will miss Glenn's onfield ability, but must look ahead.
''Our job is to get ready and play,'' he said. ''We can't let other things distract us.''
When asked if Glenn let teammates down, McGinest replied: ''Next question.''
Milloy called Glenn ''a friend,'' but said other receivers showed they are capable in last Friday's 14-0 exhibition victory over the New York Giants.
''You have a lot of talent and a lot of depth in the receiving corps,'' he said.
Quarterback Drew Bledsoe wouldn't talk to reporters, only releasing a statement.
''It is too bad it has come to this,'' he said. ''As a team, we are going to look ahead and go forward with the guys we have. We're just going to try to win some games.''
Fellow wide receiver Troy Brown said he left a message at Glenn's home, but never heard back.
''I am just concerned for him personally,'' he said. ''I hope he's doing well ... that's the main thing.''
Belichick said he visited Glenn's home in Ohio in February. He said he also dispatched assistant coaches there in the off-season. Belichick refused to elaborate.
In May, Glenn was charged with assault and battery at his Walpole, Mass. home. The alleged victim, the mother of his 5-year-old son, has since recanted the charges, but prosecutors are still pursuing the case.
The NFL suspended Glenn for violating terms of its substance-abuse program, which Glenn entered in January 2000. Glenn said he tested positive for marijuana.
Glenn said his most recent violation was missing a drug test, even though he alerted the program's administrators he would be out of town. Glenn said he later took the test and tested negative.
Glenn was the team's No. 1 draft pick, seventh overall, in 1996 out of Ohio State. He is fourth in franchise history with 315 receptions.
He started all 16 games last season and had 79 catches for a team-best 963 yards and six touchdowns.
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