The dangers of and feelings against marijuana have been somewhat diminished in recent years, with of course some states even legalizing the drug and others lightening their punishment for possession and use of the product.
One thing that hasn’t lessened in the NFL’s harsh zero-tolerance policy on it’s players use of the drug, with players like Josh Gordon serving a year-long suspension for repeated use.
Though the NFL is against marijuana, it appears of the league’s owners are not, including it’s most powerful one, Jerry Jones of the Cowboys.
According to Pro Football Talk, at the league’s owner’s meeting in Arizona this past week, Jones lobbied other owner’s for the repeal of the league’s strict policy.
Via Cowboys Wire –
Jones, per a source who heard the comments, wants the league to drop its prohibition on marijuana use. Jones was reminded that the issue falls under the umbrella of collective bargaining, which would require the players to make one or more concessions in exchange for significant changes to the marijuana prohibition.
Separately, the league office reiterated to PFT its position that any changes to the substance-abuse policy would occur within the confines of labor negotiations, and that the league is willing to listen to the medical community about any potential changes to the rules regarding marijuana.
To unpack this, the owners group feels that if they are going to allow players to smoke weed without any punishment from their employers, the players will have to give up something they’ve bargained for in return.
Jones is on the front line of one of the more public recent cases of marijuana discipline. Cowboys’ DE Randy Gregory tested positive for marijuana at the 2015 scouting combine. Gregory admitted he self-medicates for his bipolar disorder and has tested positive several times in his two years in the league. Gregory is currently serving his third suspension, a calendar year ban that will have him miss the entire 2017 season. He played just two games last season after serving the four and 10-game bans back-to-back.
Gregory voluntarily checked himself into rehab prior to 2016 training camp, but that didn’t suspend his testing and further bans ensued.
Under the current drug policy, players have to test positive four times for their first suspension. A missed test counts as a fail.