The NFL, which has seen young players suddenly retire recently out of fear for their long-term health, while retired players are diagnosed with CTE, is apparently willing to discuss the potential of players using marijuana for pain management.
“The NFL has written to the NFL Players Association offering to work in tandem to study the potential use of marijuana as a pain management tool for players, according to people familiar with the situation,” Mark Maske of The Washington Post wrote last week.
According to the Post, the NFL Players Association is also interested in the league adjusting its rules that currently prohibit the recreational use of marijuana.
CTE (Chronic traumatic encephalopathy) is the main issue the NFL needs to address, with so many former players being diagnosed with it. But the potential of the league allowing the players to use marijuana to help with pain is a nice step for the league nonetheless.
Football is a brutal sport, and while there are only 16 games on the schedule, the players beat the hell out of one another during those games.
Allowing the players to use marijuana to cope with the pain — while others, I’m sure, will love to simply be able to use it recreationally — would be wise.
While marijuana has been decriminalized in states such as Colorado, California, and Illinois, players for the Broncos, Raiders, and Bears would be subject to suspension if they tested positive for marijuana. That’s absurd.
It’s also absurd that marijuana is still something that’s causing people to go to jail, while money is wasted on law enforcement agencies targeting those who use. But back to the NFL.
Commissioner Roger Goodell has been getting it from all angles lately with his laissez faire approach to the CTE issue, and it would behoove him to not stand in the way of one small nugget (pun intended) being given to the players who put their health on the line for the sport.