Everyone has noticed that five Seahawks have been suspended since 2011 for violating the league’s policy against performance-enhancing drugs.
Everyone including 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh.
On Tuesday, Harbaugh addressed the ongoing issue in a way that necessarily will increase tensions among the NFC West rivals who also are among the best teams in the NFL.
“I’ve definitely noticed it,” Harbaugh said of the situation in Seattle, via Grant Cohn of the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat. “You don’t know what it is. Even when people say what it is, you don’t know that that’s what it is. I’ve heard this thrown out or that, but that’s usually the agent or the players themselves saying it’s, for example, Adderall. But the NFL doesn’t release what it actually is, so you have no idea. You’re taking somebody at their word that I don’t know if you can take them at their word, understanding the circumstances.”
In less diplomatic words, Harbaugh is basically saying that it’s not reasonable to assume a cheater isn’t lying. And Harbaugh isn’t a fan of cheaters.
“It has no place in an athlete’s body,” Harbaugh said regarding the NFL’s list of banned substances. “Play by the rules. You want to be above reproach, especially when you’re good, because you don’t want people to come back and say, ‘They’re winning because they’re cheating.’ That’s always going to be a knee-jerk reaction in my experience, since I was a little kid. We want to be a above reproach in everything and do everything by the rules. If you don’t, if you cheat to win then you’ve already lost, according to Bo Schembechler. And Bo Schembechler is about next to the Word of God. It’s not the Word of God, but it’s close.”
And that’s not a direct body slam of the way coach Pete Carroll handles his team, but it’s close.
Did we mention these teams get together Week Two on NBC?