Fired NFL Players Want Their Jobs Back After the League Changed Its Drug Policy
The National Football League’s new collective bargaining agreement ended suspensions for drug use among pro players. And now athletes previously kicked out of the game for getting high want to be reinstated, given the new rules.
Published on March 23, 2020

Two weeks ago, the NFL owners, agents, and players agreed to the league’s new CBA, which ended suspensions for any player who failed a drug test (with some exceptions). Now, two former ballers who got kicked out of the game for getting high want to be reinstated given the groundbreaking policy change.

One of those players is Randy Gregory, a defensive end for the Dallas Cowboys. In February 2019, the NFL suspended Gregory indefinitely for violating the league’s anti-marijuana policy multiple times. Gregory is definitely a lover of weed; he tested hot for THC for the first time back in 2015, when he was still trying out for the NFL. In fact, Gregory has been suspended due to pot use for more games (30) than he’s actually played (28), according to the NFL’s news blog.

ESPN reported over the weekend that Gregory officially applied for reinstatement. The NFL has 60 days to respond to his request, but since he received his indefinite suspension under the league’s old rules, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell must personally sign off on Gregory’s return. 

The rumor mill is also buzzing over Josh “Flash” Gordon’s anticipated request for reinstatement. Last December, the former Seattle Seahawks’ wide receiver caught an indefinite suspension after testing positive for “drugs of abuse” and performance-enhancing drugs. Previously, Gordon tested positive for marijuana and “dilutes,” meaning the NFL alleged that he tried to tamper with his urine samples prior to drug screening. 

However, Gordon may have a more difficult time returning to the game than Gregory. Although the new NFL CBA doesn’t suspend players for drugs like weed or cocaine, the league will continue to suspend players for taking performance enhancers, like anabolic steroids. The new CBA also kept suspensions on the table for obstructing the drug screening process, which Gordon allegedly did by diluting his urine.

With Gregory and Gordon kicking off a fresh round of reinstatement requests, we’ll likely see more players who got banned for getting lit or self-medicating attempting big comebacks in the near future, as well. 

Several retired NFL players have publicly denounced the NFL’s draconian anti-weed policy, and given how many promising careers were ruined over it, it’s high time that the league gives its cannabis-consuming former players another chance.

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Randy Robinson
Based in Denver, Randy studied cannabinoid science while getting a degree in molecular biology at the University of Colorado. When not writing about cannabis, science, politics, or LGBT issues, they can be found exploring nature somewhere in the Rocky Mountains. Catch Randy on Twitter and Instagram @randieseljay
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