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NFL willing to study benefits of medical marijuana

Courtesy of Kamil Krzaczynski, USA Today Sports

The NFL has long been in archaic times when it comes to the pain management of their players. It’s been a major point of contention around the league for some time.

More than anything, the chemical reliance some players have shown when it comes to opioids has been a major issue. Heck, some former players have indicated that team doctors were handing out these controlled substances like candy (more on that here).

As the broader United States liberalizes its stance on marijuana, the NFL itself has been slow to make any sort of a policy change.

That could very well be coming to a conclusion here soon.

According to The Washington Post‘s Mark Maske, the NFL has now offered to work with the NFLPA on studying the benefits of medical marijuana.

“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,” Maske reported.

This comes on the heels of the NFLPA itself indicating that it might very well liberalize its approach to marijuana. It also comes at a time when multiple owners want the league to change its stance on marijuana, both from a medicinal and recreational standpoint.

The NFL finds itself in an unenviable position with multiple states in which NFL teams are housed legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes. In most other states where teams set up shop, marijuana is legal for medical purposes.

Though, the league itself has no obligation to allow for the use of this substance. As a private entity and employer, it reserves the rights to test for the “drug.”

Also, the Post’s report in no way means that the NFL is set to move forward with a more liberal policy on marijuana. It simply wants to study the substance as an alternative to opioids.

At the very least, this is a start.