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DEA makes surprise inspections on NFL teams

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Batman, Nov 16, 2014.

  1. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    The DEA today made surprise inspections on as many as a half-dozen traveling NFL teams as part of an ongoing investigation into prescription drug abuse. The inspections involved bag searches on team planes and questioning of team doctors, and the whole thing flowed out of allegations made in the concussion lawsuit.


    So, headline-grabbing publicity stunt or a serious problem for the league? The way I understand it from some other reading, the DEA is concerned about transporting painkillers across state lines and distributing them outside of a doctor's normal area. If that's the case, this could be a serious problem not just for the NFL, but all sports leagues. I've got to think the NFL is not alone in shooting up an injured player so they can get back on the field.
  2. Armchair_QB

    Armchair_QB Well-Known Member

    Except that there is nothing illegal about treating injured athletes with legal prescription medication.
  3. LongTimeListener

    LongTimeListener Well-Known Member

    I would think such matters as informed consent, proper licensing of the person administering the drug, and accurate record-keeping are not strengths of the NFL game-day process.
  4. Armchair_QB

    Armchair_QB Well-Known Member

    And if that's true, it's probably been true for oh, I don't know, forever, and isn't exactly a big secret.

    Odd that the DEA is choosing now for a cheap stunt like this.
  5. LongTimeListener

    LongTimeListener Well-Known Member

    Maybe. This certainly has the stench of Novitzky on it.

    But there is definitely a legal case to be made if someone wants to look.
  6. Tarheel316

    Tarheel316 Well-Known Member

    If this has Novitzky's fingerprints on it then, yes, it's grandstanding. Seems to me the DEA should have more important things to worry about.
  7. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    Questions about whether there is prescription drug abuse -- which there likely is. Is it really news to anyone?

    They were checking road teams -- first, it would be illegal for the doctors to give out Schedule 2 drugs in a state where they aren't licensed. Those things are controlled. Second, if the trainers have a stash and they are handing them out like candies, well, trainers aren't licensed to prescribe drugs.

    This all stems from that class-action lawsuit headlined by Jim McMahon in which the players said the doctors were lying to them about the drugs they were given.

    My opinion is. ... why are we wasting our time on this? Let the players be responsible for figuring out the risks themselves. They are big boys. They make lots of scary choices when they step on an NFL field.

    Oh, and as is often the case when his name gets introduced on this board, Jeff Novitzky has nothing to do with this.
  8. cranberry

    cranberry Well-Known Member

    I don't agree. We're talking about employers who have a huge financial incentive to keep players on the field and have for decades encouraged and facilitated the abuse of painkillers, dangling fame and fortune in front of highly competitive young men. There needs to be better oversight.
  9. RecoveringJournalist

    RecoveringJournalist Well-Known Member

    Agree with this 100 percent.
  10. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    I would agree with you if we were talking about high school football players -- kids -- who are usually not mature enough to evaluate things for themselves and try to make informed decisions. But I don't agree that we need to treat everyone like they are incapable of making decisions for themselves, and appoint an authority who gets to decide what is good and not good. People should be free to weigh consequences and make choices for themselves.

    Pro football players are grown men who obviously know they are playing a sport with risks. When someone from the team comes at them with a needle or a bottle of pills, it's incumbent on the player to understand what is happening before they agree. It's THEIR body, not yours. Indeed, the teams are dangling fame and fortune. And I feel that it's not my place or yours to decide whether that is a good tradeoff. It's an individual decision that anyone should be able to make for himself.

    If you tell me that a team lied to a player about what they were doing to him, it's a different story. I'd bet that has happened. But in that case, you have a criminal act that is already addressed by the law. If, on the other hand, it's a matter of a player CHOOSING to do something with or without understanding the consequences of his decision, I am decidedly NOT of the opinion that we need to protect people from their own choices because you or someone else thinks they made the wrong choice. It's their choice, not yours.
  11. RecoveringJournalist

    RecoveringJournalist Well-Known Member

    Part of the problem is the players want to get back on the field just as badly. I wonder if that would be the case if the NFL had guaranteed contracts like every other sport.
  12. bigpern23

    bigpern23 Well-Known Member

    It seems there is a law that addresses this situation as well and that NFL teams may be in violation of that law. I don't think the argument is for establishing a body to protect people from their own choices. It's about enforcement of an existing law.
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