If/when (when) the NFLPA adopts the drug policy proposed by the NFL on Friday, the revamped procedures will have a variety of new features.
Per a source with knowledge of the situation, the policy will include the following terms:
1. An independent arbitrator will hear appeals for positive tests under both the substance-abuse policy and the PED policy. The NFL and NFLPA will jointly select, approve, and pay for a pool of three-to-five arbitrators.
2. The threshold for a positive test for marijuana will increase to 35 ng/ml. The prior limit was 15 ng/ml; the Olympic standard is 150 ng/ml. Also, the policy will have additional steps for players who test positive for the substance, before an initial suspension.
3. All players who tested positive or who were otherwise disciplined or placed into the drug or PED program will have retroactivity, with the new rules being reapplied as of March 11, 2014.
4. A two-game suspension will be issued upon conviction for driving under the influence. However, there will be no action taken after a DUI arrest, as the NFL initially had proposed.
5. Amphetamines taken without a Therapeutic Use Exemption during the offseason will be evaluated under the substance-abuse policy. During the season, a positive test without a TUE will continue to be a violation of the PED policy.
6. Testing for hGH will occur in the 2014 season. There will be no population study, but the players will have the ability to challenge the science during the appeal process. No blood samples will be collected on game days.
7. Independent investigators will be retained to review cases of breached confidentiality. Any employers of the league, the teams, the union, players, and agents found to be in violation of the confidentiality provision will face fines of up to $500,000, termination of employment, or other discipline.
We’ll have more throughout the day as we study and understand the implications of these new terms.