Rajiv Patel

Some NFL Owners and Executives Support Modifying Cannabis Rules

A number of NFL team owners seem to support changes to the league’s collective bargaining agreement regarding cannabis use, according to a report from NFL.com. The majority of 10 team owners interviewed by NFL insider Ian Rappaport indicated support for “decriminalizing” marijuana, making it harder for players to be suspended for cannabis use. Two owners supported only issuing fines, while two others preferred to keep the status quo.

Although just 10 of the league’s 32 owners spoke about the issue, several mentioned conversations with other owners. One indicated there is a “groundswell” of support by principals to ease cannabis-related punishments. However, the NFL remains a hard-line opponent of changes, despite the Players Association constructing a committee to study cannabis as a pain management therapy.

“Medical experts have not recommended making a change or revisiting our collectively-bargained policy and approach related to marijuana,” an NFL spokesman said in the report.

One team executive said that under the current CBA there appear to be two sets of rules. If a player is arrested for low-level possession in a non-legal state, they could be suspended for violating the league’s personal conduct policy; however, a player in Oregon or Colorado is allowed to use and possess the drug and wouldn’t face any action from the league unless he failed a drug test.

The general feeling is that changes need to be made and the CBA needs to be modified to, if nothing else, eliminate the double standard that exists due to disparities among state laws.

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