Corbin Smith
Author

Should NFL Consider Medicinal Marijuana for Treating Players?

Jan 27, 2014 11:09 PM EST

During his Monday press conference, Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll expressed interest in the NFL potentially looking to medicinal marijuana as a remedy for treating players.

Carroll's statement comes only a few days after Roger Goodell said that the league could consider allowing medicinal marijuana to be used if science proves that it helps treat concussions. The commissioner said that the league will "follow medicine" to determine if the drug would have a positive impact helping players, but that has not been proven to this point.

With both teams playing in Super Bowl XLVIII ironically coming from two states that legalized recreational marijuana use, the idea of removing the drug from the league's banned substance list has become a hot topic of debate.

"I would say that we have to explore and find ways to make our game a better game and take care of our players in whatever way possible," Carroll told the media immediately following Seattle's practice, and then he added, "Regardless of what other stigmas might be involved, we have to do this because the world of medicine is doing this."

Washington and Colorado both made recreational pot use legal following the 2012 election, and 20 different states allow medicinal marijuana to be used as a treatment for multiple medical conditions. Trying to remove it from the league's banned substance list would be quite problematic if the NFL chose to go that route due to fact that the federal government still considers the drug illegal.

Further studies need to be done to see if marijuana really does have any positive benefits for injured athletes, but as statements by Carroll and Goodell indicate, many around the league may view looking into the situation as well worth it.

Should the National Football League consider removing medicinal marijuana from the banned substances list? Why or why not?
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