Former Broncos and Ravens tight end Shannon Sharpe thinks the NFL has a problem with the abuse of prescription cough syrup with codeine, commonly consumed in a mixture known as purple drank.
“Obviously, this is something that needs to be addressed,” Sharpe told Jon Saraceno of USA Today. “There is a trend here.”
Sharpe’s comments come days after former Raiders quarterback JaMarcus Russell was arrested for possession of codeine syrup. Packers defensive lineman Johnny Jolly and the late Terrence Kiel have previously been charged with codeine possession.
“Once upon a time, this was part of the subculture that was not NFL-related,” said Sharpe, who retired after the 2003 season. “When I played I never heard anybody talk about this stuff. Now you’re seeing more NFL players involved with it.”