Welcome to “What Are They Smokin’?” a semi-weekly column questioning sports stars and those within the sports world over their latest, ahem, antics.
That’s what you hear every time the NFL commissioner Roger Goodell makes a public appearance. Heck, even an off-hand comment that mentions his name earns the commish a chorus of boos.
And he deserves every single one of them.
The commissioner recently went on ESPN’s “Mike & Mike” show to discuss the hot topic of cannabis. And when he wasn’t being publicly booed he word-vomited this nonsense:
“I think you still have to look at a lot of aspects of marijuana use. Is it something that can be negative to the health of our players? Listen, you’re ingesting smoke, so that’s not usually a very positive thing that people would say.”
“It does have addictive nature. There are a lot of compounds in marijuana that may not be healthy for the players long-term. All of those things have to be considered. And it’s not as simple as someone just wants to feel better after a game. We really want to help our players in that circumstance but I want to make sure that the negative consequences aren’t something that is something that we’ll be held accountable for some years down the road.”
This quote, as usual, proves how out of touch the NFL is with the modern world.
The public view, unless you’re Jeff Sessions, has become much more approving of marijuana. The negative perception of the drug has transformed into a thirst for a more thorough understanding of the plant.
Cannabis is legal, either recreationally or medically, in 29 states and that number will continue to grow, while 133 million Americans are estimated to have tried cannabis, per the Washington Post.
Not only is it becoming more widely accepted and legal throughout the nation, marijuana is also a proven and effective option for pain relief. And it’s been proven to have a low rate of addiction, too. So Goodell is either ignorant or a liar when it comes to his understanding of cannabis—I’ll let you make the call on that.
More than anything, the NFL is entertainment. Unlike the NBA, the NFL is behind the times, again. The NFL has successfully banned touchdown celebrations and any individuality that makes the game better, while taking an increasingly erroneous, uneducated and misunderstood stance on the marijuana policy.
The only thing that Goodell and the NFL’s stance on marijuana is doing is robbing fans of some of their favorite players. While Goodell spouts silliness on ESPN Radio, exciting players like Martavis Bryant and Josh Gordon are banned from the league during the prime of their precious football careers.