According to Ian Rapoport via his twitter account, Brandon Spikes has been suspended by the league for four games for violation of the league's substance abuse policy. It was apparently not steroid related, but there is no other information at this time.
This has to be considered a pretty big blow to a defense that was starting to hit its stride considering the depth at linebacker, specifically on the inside is perilous. It appears that Spikes will not protest and will be out unti the playoffs.
How much will this hurt the Patriots down the stretch?