You read that title right. The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) is reportedly investigating the distribution of prescription pills in NFL locker rooms, according to a the NY Daily News.
The investigation apparently started after 1,300 former players took the league to court in Northern California back in May. And it appears that the investigation is focused on those who are responsible for doling out medication in the locker room.
Agents from the DEA’s New York division are reaching out to former players to learn how NFL doctors and trainers get access to potent narcotics such as Percodan and Vicodin or anti-inflammatories such as Toradol, a nonaddictive prescription drug widely used around the league to treat pain.
Rumors of widespread prescription drug abuse surrounded the NFL in the 1980’s and 1990’s, as many former players have attested to in the past. Heck, even one former trainer called it the “wild wild west” in terms of how the league monitered the drugs players were taking.
Both the NFL and NFLPA failed to respond to this report by the NY Daily News, but it shouldn’t be too surprising that the DEA got involved. Once the players took to court to air their issues and filed a lawsuit against the league, more information became available to the masses. Once that happened, the DEA had what it needed in order to start an investigation.
While unlikely to result in any sort of scandal, this investigation could potentially keep the NFL in the public eye as it relates to its handling of long-term health effects brought on by concussions and other head injuries.