NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced in May that the NFL and NFLPA have agreed to take a new approach to player pain management & emotional well-being. To do so they’ve formed a Joint Pain Management Committee that will “conduct research concerning pain management and alternative therapies … [that] will include cannabis, cannabinoids and CBD.” The Committee’s mandate also includes a review of teams’ policies and practices for the use of prescription medication by players.
The announcement is as welcome as it is overdue. And driven, at least in part, by a player class action suit accusing the NFL of recklessly using opioids and other painkillers to push players back onto the field before they’re ready. And, of course, the infamous concussion suit brought by almost 5,000 former NFLers that settled in their favor just last summer for almost a billion dollars.
In any event, high profile former players such as Rob Gronowski and Terrell Davis have recently gone public with their support for using CBD for pain management. Even superstar quarterback Tom Brady thinks “they should explore it and do what is best for the players.”
But the last word goes to former Baltimore Ravens offensive lineman Eugene Monroe who offers this sobering perspective:
“This pain is never going away. My body is damaged. I have to manage it somehow. Managing it with pills was slowly killing me. Now I’m able to function and be extremely efficient by figuring out how to use different formulations of cannabis.”