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Kevin Ellison case puts Vicodin glare on Chargers

News of the lawsuit filed against the Saints for allegedly covering up the misuse and/or theft of Vicodin from the team’s in-house drug locker raised serious questions regarding the manner in which NFL teams manage potent narcotics.

The arrest of Chargers safety Kevin Ellison serves only to amplify the problem.

According to Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune, agent Jerome Stanley claims that Ellison had 100 Vicodin pills because he wanted to have enough on hand.  Ellison had knee surgery after his final season of college football.

“He thought it was a good idea to get enough pain killers to last the
season
,” Stanley said.  “They were for him to use
because of his knee surgery.”

We’re not sure which “season” Stanley was referring to.  Spring?  Summer?  If he means the 2010 football season, Ellison will likely need a lot more than 100.

Ellison supposedly did not want to “go back and forth” to the team for the medication, and he didn’t want to “have to bother anyone” for the pills.

Regardless of Ellison’s explanation, the implication is that the Chargers issued Ellison 100 Vicodin pills at once.  And the question becomes why they’d give him so many, especially since he’ll be at the facility on numerous occasions as part of offseason workouts.

So while the details on this one remain to be sorted out, we tend to think that more teams should follow the approach that one unnamed trainer shared not long ago with Gary Myers of the New York Daily News.  Teams shouldn’t keep their own supply of prescription medications.  They should simply have prescriptions issued by a physician directly to each player, and the requisite amounts should be provided to the players on a daily or weekly basis.

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21 Responses to “Kevin Ellison case puts Vicodin glare on Chargers”
  1. The Wishbone says: May 25, 2010 5:18 PM

    Oh, no! Adults with pain pills?! What’s next?
    Athletes banging groupies?!
    A football game in cold weather?!
    The horror! The horror!

  2. -RoNiN- says: May 25, 2010 5:26 PM

    So wait.. Ellison through the entire Chargers organization under the bus by saying they gave them all to him at once?! Wow!!

  3. Brewster says: May 25, 2010 5:28 PM

    Damnit Florio, get the functionality of the website corrected will ya?
    At the moment there is a whole page (#2) that has disappeared. There is a gap in stories from 5:08 PM on 5/24 (another american needle post) until 1:38PM today the post on Joe Horn. All posts in between those times have disappeared.

  4. alewatcher says: May 25, 2010 5:32 PM

    I seriously don’t get this. I’ve had knee surgery and shoulder surgery on different occasions in the past few years, and each time my doctor gave me a prescription for 90 Vicodin when I left the hospital. Believe me, 90 Vicodin don’t last all that long when you’re post-op. I had those prescriptions refilled at least three times, and my doctor is a real hardass when it comes to handing out drugs. 100 Vicodin is not a big deal, as long as they were acquired legally. Much ado about nothing, IMO.

  5. JoeMcRugby says: May 25, 2010 5:33 PM

    Quote from the article:
    _______________________
    Stanley said he did not know where Ellison got that quantity of pills but said Ellison did not want to have to “go back and forth” and “have to bother anyone” for the pills.
    _______________________
    I may be slow and quite dense, but I fail to see where anyone implies that the Chargers were the source of the Vicodin.
    Not to say that they weren’t, but there are no implications in Acee’s article.

  6. XBOD says: May 25, 2010 5:36 PM

    Bull Shit these ARE!! grown men!!

  7. XBOD says: May 25, 2010 5:37 PM

    They should be able to take what they want when they want………..

  8. iusedtobeteddybayer says: May 25, 2010 5:49 PM

    and what, the Bert Farve “Vik me up!” thing puts the glare on the Packers?

  9. roosterwes says: May 25, 2010 6:01 PM

    100 vicodins ain’t nothin! I’m having surgery the day after tomorrow where they’ll take bone out of my hip and put iyt through my throat into my cervical spine along with other metal parts. I also have rheumatoid arthritis. The more you take, the more it takes. Plus, it’s just like the flu if you run out. You have to grow big boy nads to stop taking them.

  10. JayDee says: May 25, 2010 6:02 PM

    I would like to see anybody play that hard and not need a pain killer or two a day. LOL

  11. smithopher says: May 25, 2010 6:10 PM

    These teams need to really start protecting themselves from all these drugs going around. It started with steroids, now pain killers. They need to get away from it because you don’t need to be known as the organization that gives their players steroids. Not to mention any repercussions that could be handed down from the Commissioner or the US Government.

  12. buzzbissinger says: May 25, 2010 6:14 PM

    @alewatcher
    Amen. 15 years ago Doctors were handing these out like candy.

  13. WeaponX says: May 25, 2010 6:26 PM

    Who the hell cares about prescription pain killers? This Vicodin thing is such a joke! We’re talking about grown men that are professional athletes. If they need the PK’s, and they take them responsibly (and don’t get hooked like your boy Favre) it’s not that big of a deal. This story was old before it was first reported. Every athlete on every level has used pain killers in some way, from tylenol to Vicodin, and probably beyond.

  14. jahrasta311 says: May 25, 2010 7:07 PM

    Nice work, Florio. As always, you manage to get half the details of the story wrong, and falsely implicate an innocent party of wrongdoing.
    Par for the course.

  15. MasterShake says: May 25, 2010 7:13 PM

    The “Whoops” defense seems appropriate right about now. From all sides.

  16. Tinbender says: May 25, 2010 7:14 PM

    I keep two in my coat pocket and more at home, never know when my back will go out. When it does I need something NOW. Playing in the NFL I could see a fella wanting a good supply on hand.

  17. nflhof says: May 25, 2010 7:18 PM

    Did anyone say where the pills came from? I have yet to hear that so why is the team under the glare? WTF is this about anyway?

  18. irishsamurai says: May 25, 2010 7:28 PM

    100 count vics are a normal monthly dose,general public just overreact ever since the limbaugh thing

  19. Beast says: May 25, 2010 7:29 PM

    The NFL is getting to rediculous with these rules. He’s a pro NFL player. Check the lockers of every pro athlete and I guarantee you’ll find Vicodin in all there lockers. I don’t see what the big deal is. It must be a real slow off season for this to be a top story. If this was the regular season, this story wouldn’t even surface.

  20. T3d Strik3r says: May 25, 2010 7:34 PM

    There was absolutely no implication, either by the player or the agent, that the Chargers provided the pills.
    To the contrary, the agent specifically stated he didn’t know where the pills came from, which implies the pills DIDN’T come from the team, because surely the agent would have jumped on such a great excuse for his client.
    Florio, you’re a liar, plain and simple.

  21. Montana at Hart says: May 25, 2010 7:45 PM

    The story started because he was arrested. In other words the police believe he has broken a law. So 90 may be normal but you don’t get arrested for being normal. There is more to the story, such as how did the police know he had 100?

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