Lost in the turmoil of the last four weeks, blood testing finally has arrived in the NFL. HGH screening commences on Monday, according to Albert Breer of NFL Media.
Per Breer, NFLPA president Eric Winston alerted players to the details in a recent letter.
“Each week of the season, 5 players on 8 teams will be tested,” Winston wrote. “No testing will occur on game days. We negotiated to ensure that the methodology of testing be conducted in the most professional and safest manner for players. Importantly, after three years of negotiating, players won the right to challenge any aspect of the science behind the HGH isoforms test in an appeal of a positive test.”
The players also won the ability to appeal any positive tests to an independent arbitrator, a significant reduction in the powers previously possessed by the Commissioner. Under the new PED and substance-abuse policies, all positive tests will be resolved via neutral arbitration.
For years, various estimates have emerged regarding the percentage of players who use HGH. If any still do, there’s now a much greater chance they’ll be caught.