New NFL Policy to Reduce Marijuana Discipline

ESPN reports that the renegotiation of the NFL’s drug policy, which has been in progress since 2011, will significantly increase the threshold for a “positive” marijuana testing and reduce the punishments for future violations involving that drug.

The NFL Players Association has long supported studying the medical research that has led to the legalization of marijuana in many states for medicinal use, but it believes changes are needed in the meantime regardless of the medical research.

The league is apparently open to the proposal. The biggest holdup in the agreement is not the marijuana issue; rather, it appears to a question of whether the commissioner should have final say over disciplinary matters in general, or whether appeals from his rulings can be heard by independent arbitrators.

Any change in the league’s approach would probably be prospective-only, and too late to help players such

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