Jim McMahon, the quarterback of the Super Bowl XX-winning Chicago Bears, had an injury-plagued career and has suffered with a host of injuries in retirement. But he says he has found something that really helps: marijuana.
McMahon was on a panel of former NFL players at the Cannabis World Congress and Business Expo in New York City, and he said there that NFL players need to get off opioid painkillers and get on marijuana.
“There’s so many uses to this plant,” McMahon said, via the New York Daily News. “Hundreds of thousands of people are dying from [painkillers] and there’s not one case of people dying from the hemp plant.”
Former Giants defensive end Leonard Marshall offered similar thoughts.
“My quality of life has improved because of this,” Marshall said.
Despite many former players — as well as at least one current player, Eugene Monroe — advocating for marijuana use, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has said the league doesn’t plan to change its policy of considering marijuana a banned substance.
“It’s an NFL policy and we believe it’s the correct policy, for now, in the best interest of our players and the long-term health of our players,” Goodell said in February. “I don’t foresee a change in that clearly in the short term.”
Despite that stance, American society is becoming more accepting of marijuana use, both medicinally and recreationally. Active players aren’t allowed to use it, but retired players will.