Justin Blackmon violated the NFL policy on substance abuse....again. What substance? Who knows, and I'm sure as hell not going to speculate. Legal fees are not cheap, but we can learn some things about what's gone on over the last year by taking a look at the source material. From the agreement as posted on the NFL PA website.
"The illegal use of drugs and the abuse of prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs, and alcohol(hereinafter referred to as "substances of abuse") is prohibited for players in the National Football League ("NFL"). Moreover, the use of alcohol may be prohibited for individual playersin certain situations where clinically indicated in accordance with the terms of this Policy"
Theoretically every college football Saturday could fail me out of the NFL. So that’s neat.
Let's cover some highlights, lowligh...you know what? Details is the best word for this sentence. Here they are.
Before entering an Intervention Stage, players shall be tested only for benzoylecognine (cocaine); delta 9-THC-carboxylic acid (marijuana); amphetamine and its analogs; opiates (total morphine and codeine); opioids (e.g., hydrocodone, oxycodone); phencyclidine (PCP); and methylenedioxymethamphetamine ("MDMA") and its analogues (the "NFL Drug Panel").
To be clear this does not mean Justin failed a test for one of these because
Players enter Stage One of the Intervention Program by a Positive Test, Behavior or Self-Referral more fully described as follows:
Behavior: Behavior, including but not limited to an arrest related to an alleged misuse of substances of abuse, which, in the judgment of the Medical Director, exhibits physical, behavioral, or psychological signs or symptoms of misuse of substances of abuse
After a player enters any stage of the Intervention Program, Testing for substances of abuse, in addition to the NFL Drug Panel, shall be at the discretion of the Medical Director in accordance with the terms of this Intervention Program.
"But Pokelahoma! I don’t think Justin failed the tests that got him suspended. This is clearly a OU scheme to discredit us/sway (Insert Recruit)!"
Not quite probable but a chance exists within the rules that he is in fact, just a massive moron
to appear for required Testing at the time selected by the Medical Advisor without a valid reason as approved by the Medical Advisor, or fails to cooperate fully in the Testing process as determined by the Medical Advisor, or provides a diluted specimen (as determined in accordance with the procedures set forth in Appendix A-1), will be treated as having a Positive Test.
If a player fails to provide the Medical Advisor with an address and telephone number where he can be contacted, and, as a result, such player cannot be contacted when the Medical Advisor requires that a Test be administered or the player cannot be contacted at the address and telephone number provided to the Medical Advisor, the player’s failure to notify the Medical Advisor or inability to be contacted shall be considered a Positive Test
Now we come to the section that has me a bit worried.
We all know about his first four game suspension, which may have qualified as his first failed test under level two of the NFL drug testing agreement. Advancement to level three requires two failures while in level two. What’s strange to me is the next step after this one calls for a 6 game suspension unless the commissioner and medical staff determine that longer is needed.
Stage three, the last stage where NFL banishment comes into play requires a minimum of one calendar year in suspension and reinstatement from the commissioner directly.
I haven’t talked about how you actually get out of the NFL drug testing program, because sadly we haven’t been close to needing to talk about it.
If Justin is in Stage two he needs to go 24 consecutive months without a failed test, failure to cooperate with a test. They can test him up to ten time a month. If he is now in stage three, assuming he gets to play again he’ll be subject to random drug tests for the rest of his career. However, if he stays clean for three years he can request they reduce the frequency of his tests, which may or may not be answered.
This has been a fun and exciting exercise for me. Thanks for reading.
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