The NFL Needs to Reevaluate Its PED Policy

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bill-swift - May 25, 2012

In a perfect world, all competitions would be honest and fair. Everyone would go out and play whatever the game was to the best of their ability, and the best team would win. Sadly, that is not always the case.

People cheat. That's why we have referees; to catch those that break rules (intentional or not) during the course of the game.

That isn't the only time or way in which people cheat. There have been many that have taken different substances that have been deemed performance enhancing. These drugs are against the rules since they give the user an unfair advantage.

The whole thing seems sensible, right? Well, the NFL has found a way to screw it up.

Two players, New York Giants running back Andre Brown and Houston Texans punter Brett Hartmann, have been suspended for the first four games of the 2012 season for taking a substance that is banned according to the NFL's PED policy; the drugs in question-Adderall and Ritalin.

Both players have ADHD, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and take the aforementioned drugs in order to control it (Brown takes Adderall and Hartmann Ritalin).

In fairness to the NFL, both players could have filled out the appropriate paperwork and received the necessary exemption. Both have admitted as much. However, why those drugs are on the banned list in the first place seems a little odd.

Then again, I suppose if they are able to focus thanks to the drugs controlling their disorder they are receiving a performance enhancement (sarcasm completely intended).

Hartmann has already appealed the suspension and the league has reduced it to three games. Brown has said he will appeal as well and will likely get a similar reduction.

So for all intents and purposes the duo are being suspended for failing to fill out some paperwork; a friggin' clerical error. Is it necessary to say this is absolutely ridiculous?

Article by Travis Pulver

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