On a day dominated by talk of retired players getting compensated for injuries suffered due to concussions, one very prominent retired player doesn’t want the NFL to lose sight of an important lingering issue regarding current players.
Former Bears linebacker Dick Butkus wants to see HGH testing in the NFL. Now.
“It is inexcusable to not have HGH testing in place for the 2013 season,” the Hall of Famer said in a statement released to PFT. “If you care about the health and safety of players, you should not play without first conducting HGH testing. Guys playing clean in the NFL are getting the short end of the stick. They are being put at risk and penalized for doing things the right way. Most importantly, young players at every level are watching and paying attention. They are waiting for the players to lead.”
The implementation of HGH testing hinges on the NFL and the NFLPA reaching an agreement on appeals arising from discipline imposed for violations of the performance-enhancing drug policy arising not from testing. While the NFL is willing to use third-party arbitration for positive steroids, HGH, and other PED tests, the league has refused to strip from Commissioner Roger Goodell the traditional authority over discipline arising from violations of the law relating to performance-enhancing drugs.
NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy tells PFT via email that no progress has been made regarding the finalization of an HGH policy.