The NFL & Weed: It’s Time to Grow

Blazin’ it should not matter with football TBH.

Reed Horner

Staff Footballer

 

The National Football League needs to stop testing its players for weed. The league’s stance on drugs has evolved less than President Trump’s fashion sense. The NFL needs to evolve and stop shooting itself in the foot by worrying about which players are taking a drug that has already been legalized in 28 states. Now, don’t get me wrong, this isn’t meant to be a “pro-weed” piece. This is a pro-common sense article.

The NFL is a multi-billion dollar business, as well as the most popular sports league in America. If league plans to stay the “top dog” , then it needs to be willing to evolve. Just ask yourself this: what is the benefit of testing NFL players for weed? When a player fails a drug test, who benefits? Take the Cleveland Browns’ star receiver, Josh Gordon, who missed a total of 10 games in 2014 by testing positive for marijuana. When Gordon missed 10 games, the NFL lost one of its star receivers and took a public image hit, the Browns lost their most dynamic player, and Gordon lost basically an entire year of his career. What good came from that situation? None.

The NFL benefits in no way from testing its athletes for weed and other recreational drugs. The only drugs the NFL should test for are those which give their athletes a competitive advantage. Don’t even try to argue that testing for weed is “for the players’ health” or that “weed is still illegal in 22 states that have teams”. These are grown men who play a game for a living. Don’t get me wrong, I love the NFL, but I’m not so blinded by my fandom to think the NFL is an essential part of our society.

First off, so what if it is illegal!? It is not the NFL’s job to enforce the law. The NFL doesn’t suspend its athletes for speeding tickets, not paying their taxes, or jaywalking–all of which are also illegal. So why would they punish their players for consuming a drug that isn’t even uniformly illegal throughout the country? The NFL’s job is to create the best and most entertaining professional football product in the country. They need to leave the law enforcement to those whose job it is to actually enforce the law.

Secondly, testing for marijuana to protect their players’ health is the weakest argument that can be made. Because, while the NFL bans weed, at the same time they are perfectly fine with their players shoving prescription pain killing drugs down their throats. NFL athletes are grown men, they do not need the league to “take care of them” (in terms of what goes into their bodies).

Suspending players for weed is just another instance of the NFL sticking its nose where it does not belong. If the league stopped testing their players for marijuana, their players would benefit by staying on the field; the teams would benefits because they wouldn’t have to worry about losing their players to failed recreational drug tests; and the league would benefit by keeping more of its star athletes in games and not having to deal with the public backlash that a failed drug test brings. The bottom line is the NFL needs to stop testing their players for marijuana for the benefit of both the league and its athletes.

Reed hosts the 30 Minute Podcast, it is as you’ve guessed 30 minutes.  Tune in to WFUV to hear it.  

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