Medical marijuana and the NFL?

Posted February 5, 2014 at 10:53 am

FEB. 5 OFF THE MARK COLUMN — MARK SPENSLEY, CO-PUBLISHER

Each issue of Sports Illustrated features a brief entitled “A sure sign of the Apocalypse.” It usually lists something bizarre in the world of sports that could be a sure sign of the oncoming apocalypse.

So when I read the other day a statement from NFL commissioner Roger Goodell that the league was having preliminary discussions about allowing medical marijuana to be used by league players, my first thought was this is a sure sign of the apocalypse.

In an ESPN poll asking if players should be allowed to use medical marijuana, 82 percent of those participating in the poll were in favor of this.

For the record, I voted no. My reason for taking this stance is I can see the writing on the wall. Any NFL player that wants to smoke pot will just come up with an injury that allows the use of medical marijuana.

Second, when the NFL performs drug testing, is there a difference in detecting medical marijuana from, let’s say, California Skunk or Durban Poison, two common strains of recreation marijuana?

What happens when the first player cries wolf when he is tested and fails but doesn’t have a prescription allowed under NFL rules? In my opinion there are way too many cloudy issues, pun intended!

My best guess is this policy does in fact get implemented at some point and all sorts of issues will arise because of it. And you probably will see an influx of injured NFL players walking around practice facilities cool, calm and collected with a big smile on their face and the hankering for a McDonald’s Big Mac!

Bla