Medical marijuana needs to be considered by the NFL as a pain management alternative. Especially when long term safety of the players is considered.
The main reason for this is not just an NFL problem, but an American one. Opioid addiction has been one of the most crippling problems in the US in recent memory. And this problem hasn’t ignored the NFL.
According to a study done by the Journal of Drug and Alcohol Dependence, over half of retired NFL players used narcotic painkillers during their playing career. Of those 71% ended up abusing those pain killers.
Marijuana is obviously not considered completely safe, but the kinds of medicine administered every week has actually killed people all over the country. Cannabis should be at least explored.
One of the main issues had with marijuana is the perception of it in America, and the fear of how that will make the NFL look. However, the hard truth is that the NFL is being completely ignorant when it comes to that discussion.
A league that runs commercials for a plethora of different types of alcohol, that people of all ages see every week is being just hypocritical when it comes to public image. Just because alcohol is more publicly accepted does not mean it is better for someone than marijuana. And that’s not even considering that marijuana would be used for medical purposes only. There is a reason almost every beer ad says ‘remember to drink responsibly’.
Not exploring and legalizing medical marijuana for its players would show where The NFL’s real values lie. Not in the long term health and well being of their players, but instead in grabbing money from endorsements that send a far worse message.
I’m not saying alcohol commercials shouldn’t be run, but it’s hypocritical to speak on public image and then advertise something much worse than medical marijuana would actually be.
The medicines being pumped into these players is killing people. The NFL needs to stop making excuses. It’s time for a solution.