Though the powers-that-be in Congress have yet to call for public hearings regarding HGH testing, the NFLPA quietly met privately last month with members of Congress regarding the ongoing HGH testing impasse.
Charley Casserly of CBS outlined the highlights of the NFLPA’s proposed testing protocol on Saturday’s edition of The NFL Today.
First, under the NFLPA’s proposal there would be no in-season testing. Second, only 10 percent of players would be tested in offseason. Third, players could decline to be tested.
Again, players could decline to be tested.
One more time, players could decline to be tested.
Fourth, players would receive 24 hours notice before testing. Fifth, three positive tests would be required before discipline would be imposed.
Needless to say (but I’ll say it anyway), Casserly says Congress wasn’t impressed with the proposal, and Congress doesn’t believe NFLPA is serious about implementing HGH testing.
Though it’s no surprise that the union’s leadership would try to block (or, at a minimum, delay) HGH testing at a time when many players simply don’t want HGH testing even though the NFLPA leadership already has agreed to it, a failure to make reasonable proposals that include, for example, involuntary testing ultimately will force Congress to act. And as we’ve previously explained, Congressional action won’t necessarily mean the passage of legislation. It first will mean players being called before Congress to testify under oath about what they know and how they know it and, as to HGH use, how the players get it.
Based on the proposal outlined above, it’s hard not to conclude that the NFLPA is trying to protect players who are using HGH from detection and/or consequences. If, as Browns linebacker and NFLPA Executive Committee member Scott Fujita estimated during an appearance on NBC SportsTalk, only one or two percent of the league is using HGH, an aggressive proposal that will cause Congress and neutral observers to think that the players generally have something to hide makes little sense — and it could have serious reverberations for NFL players, coaches, and other officials who ultimately have to testify under oath as this HGH testing tug-o-war continues, nearly five months after the NFL and the NFLPA agreed that HGH testing will occur.