Earlier this week, Dan Graziano of ESPN.com reported that the NFL and NFLPA have agreed to adjust the rules regarding marijuana, pending an agreement regarding HGH testing.
Per a source with direct knowledge of the negotiations, the report is inaccurate.
The source explained that increased marijuana concentrations and/or decreased marijuana discipline have never been formally proposed by either side. The possibility was mentioned only once during the discussions, and it is not part of the tentative agreement that hinges on the league and the union finalizing HGH testing.
“It’s not in there,” the source said regarding the information relating to changes to the marijuana rules.
That said, the current proposal does include the ability of the medical experts who run the substance-abuse program to adjust the time period that a player spends in the program. Rather than relying on a specific duration (such as two years or, for a player in Stage 3, the rest of his career), the player could be removed from the program if/when a clinical determination is made that the oversight no longer is needed.
In theory, the current proposal could be modified to include, for example, an increase in the concentration for marijuana or a decrease in the penalties. For now, though, the tentative deal does not include either of those things.
It’s possible that the NFLPA was simply floating the potential adjustment to the marijuana rules as a trial balloon to the media. The better approach could be to simply make the proposal to the league.