New York, NY (SportsNetwork.com) – The NFL and the NFL Players Association
announced Wednesday an agreement to a revised steroids policy.
“The NFL and NFL Players Association have reached agreement on wide-ranging
improvements to their policy on performance enhancing substances that include
the use of third-party arbitration appeals of positive tests and
implementation of testing for human growth hormone within the next few weeks,”
a joint statement said.
Information on HGH testing procedures will be distributed to teams and players
this week, with testing scheduled to begin by the end of September.
Denver Broncos wide receiver Wes Welker, Dallas Cowboys defensive back Orlando
Scandrick and Rams wide receiver Stedman Bailey are now eligible to return to
play this week as a result of the new policy. All three players had received
four-game suspensions for testing positive for substances that now will be
covered under the substance abuse policy.
Per the statement, the two parties are nearing an agreement on changes to the
substance abuse policy.
A player will be suspended without pay up to six games for a first violation
under the steroid policy. The number of games will be based on the nature of
The use of a diuretic or masking agent will draw a two-game ban and the use of
a steroid, stimulant, HGH or other banned substance will result in a four-game
suspension. If there’s evidence of an attempt to manipulate a test, the player
will receive a six-game suspension.
A second violation calls for a 10-game suspension, while a third violation
will result in a ban for a minimum of two years.
Players who test positive for banned stimulants in the offseason will no
longer be suspended. They will be referred to the substance abuse program.
However, a positive test for banned stimulants during the season still results
in a four-game suspension.