Eric Winston: If Goodell wanted HGH testing as much as power, we’d have it

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NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell discussed the issue of HGH testing recently, saying that the NFL Players Association was raising “issues that are completely unrelated” to testing that have kept it from being implemented and that the union “needs to sign off on it.”

At a meeting with reporters on Wednesday afternoon in Manhattan, NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith and NFLPA President Eric Winston had a different point of view. They both say that the league is standing in the way of implementation of testing as the sides are in agreement on everything outside of the league’s desire to avoid neutral arbitration in cases involving players adjudicated criminally or civilly of violations of the drug policy and those involving players disciplined because of evidence other than a positive test.

Winston said Goodell’s insistence on being the final voice of any disputes is the only remaining sticking point.

“If [Goodell] wanted HGH testing as bad as he wants to retain his power, then we would have had testing last year,” Winston said. “At the end of the day, that’s what this is about. He wants to hold all the cards. He wants to be the judge, jury and executioner. The players aren’t going to go for an un-American system like that and I’m not going to allow them to go for an un-American system like that.”

Both men pointed to the league’s handling of the bounty case involving the Saints as an example of why they believe neutral arbitration is so important and Smith cited baseball’s acceptance of the process that led to a neutral arbitrator’s ruling in the Alex Rodriguez case as an example of how arbitration can work in a professional sports league. Smith said the union has “tremendous resolve” on the issue, which suggests a resolution that leads to the implementation HGH testing will remain out of reach as long as the arbitrator issue is outstanding.

28 responses to “Eric Winston: If Goodell wanted HGH testing as much as power, we’d have it

  1. Sorry, doesn’t pass the smell test. testing for other substances already exists. Whatever rules are in place for the other substances would be used for this as well.

  2. On the contrary, Eric.
    If the commissioner had the hgh testing/violation policy intact, the Seahawks would not have won the SB last season.

  3. If PFT ran that picture with every article regardless of context, it might be the funniest thing ever. (i.e., the Onion’s person on the street pictures they haven’t changed since 1995).

  4. Goodell needs to give it up for the good of the game. Let there be an arbitrator if the players want that but do the testing and give all players an even playing field.

  5. …says the person who doesn’t want HGH testing for his peers – and for a good reason…

  6. The whole situation is 100% sickening. Goodell needs to realize that the players are not gladiators and allow them to use the HGH they believe they need to recover from injuries.

    As for a team for Winston, maybe the Chiefs would bring him back as a turnstile RT that get QBs creamed.

  7. Can’t wait to hear Peyton Manning go the line this year and call “Roger Goodell sucks, Roger Goodell sucks, hike !”

  8. Love it. Need more players to speak out against Goodell. Must put the pressure on the owners to get rid of this guy.

  9. Yep the way he railroaded the Saints with all that bs I understand how they won’t let him be judge jury and executioner. Someone needs to reel back in some power from this guy.

  10. I agree with Goodell on this one.. Why should I give you power and have to face the media if you make a wrong decision? right now, NO one cares if they guys shoot themselves up with HGH up to the moon except the other players. In fact, the bigger the hit – the better the play.

  11. The players already agreed to let Goodell be the final arbiter in those situations and they agreed to HGH testing.

    It’s ridiculous that the players are holding up HGH testing, that they agreed to, because they want to stomp their feet like little kids over something else they already agreed to.

  12. He’s the best commissioner ever, in the eyes of the owners, since they completely own him.

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