On the heels of a revelation that a professional rugby player in Britain has tested positive for Human Growth Hormone (HGH), the NFL has proposed blood testing its players for HGH, the Washington Post reports.
The NFL currently has HGH on its list of banned substances, but does not test for it.
“Our position is that HGH blood-testing has advanced to the point where we are taking steps to incorporate it into our program,” said Greg Aiello, the NFL’s senior vice president of public relations.
The NFL Players Association reportedly opposes the initiative on the grounds that its players should not have to be subject to blood testing.
“At this point, there’s no reason to believe that blood-testing for NFL players will or should be implemented,” said George Atallah, the union’s assistant executive director of external affairs. “We should instead focus on preserving the drug-testing policy that we have in place.”
NFLPA’S player development director, Stacy Robinson, expanded on HGH blood testing in a statement: “The NFLPA along with the NFL has supported research to find a suitable test that will detect sustained HGH use. We have and will continue to work with the NFL to build a system that is fair, reliable and maintains the integrity of our game and the health and safety of our players. In 2007 the NFLPA agreed to strengthen its Steroid Policy to discipline players if they are found through sufficient credible evidence to have used, possessed or distributed performance enhancing substances of any kind. We believe in and collectively bargained for a system that supports the testing of all banned substances. We look forward to discussing the NFL’s proposed blood testing program in our next CBA meeting.”