Article by Alec Nathan, Bleacher Report
The National Football League Players Association announced Wednesday it will study the effects of marijuana as a pain-management tool with players in search of league-approved alternatives to opioid-based painkillers.
According to the Washington Post‘s Mark Maske, “The union is forming an NFL players pain-management committee that will study players’ use of marijuana as a pain-management mechanism, among other things, though the union has not yet determined if an adjustment to the sport’s ban on marijuana use is warranted.”
Marijuana is currently banned by the NFL, but NFLPA assistant executive director of external affairs George Atallah said Wednesday the union’s hope is to learn more about how marijuana stands up as a pain-relief tool, per Maske:
“Marijuana is still governed by our collective bargaining agreement. And while some states have moved in a more progressive direction, that fact still remains. We are actively looking at the issue of pain management of our players. And studying marijuana as a substance under that context is the direction we are focused on.”
The NFLPA‘s announcement comes a day after California, Massachusetts and Nevada passed recreational marijuana measures on Election Day, according to the Associated Press’ Paul Elias.
Several former NFL players have been outspoken about the league’s need to explore new pain-management alternatives, including ex-Baltimore Ravens offensive lineman Eugene Monroe.