DETROIT (CBS Detroit) Are NFL players using pain as an excuse to get high?

On the heels of Ricky Williams and Ryan Clark making revelations about NFL players and their use of pot, Larry Foote, a Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker, said players are definitely getting high, and it’s mostly about recreation.

“I think it’s more recreation,” Foote told Scott Anderson Friday morning on 97.1 The Ticket. “I think everybody, a lot of people, smoke weed — players, non-players, my approach to that as I used to school the old players I find out they’re smoking weed, I used to say ‘leave it alone.’ Now my advice would be to them, because I know a lot of the guys do it…

“Don’t ride around smoking weed. If you’re going to get high, stay on your couch.”

He added problems come for players not from the drug itself, but from getting caught by the police with bags of it in their cars.

This comes after Steelers Safety Ryan Clark, Foote’s teammate, told ESPN some of his teammates smoke marijuana to relax –and because it’s a healthier alternative to other painkillers.

“A lot of it is stress relief. A lot of it is pain and medication,” Clark told ESPN. “Guys feel like, “If I can do this, it keeps me away from maybe Vicodin, it keeps me away from pain prescription drugs and things that guys get addicted to.” Guys look at this as a more natural way to heal themselves, to stress relieve and also to medicate themselves for pain. Guys are still going to do it.”

So, how does the NFL feel about marijuana?

Officially, they’re against it.

But Foote said they’re not exactly putting players through an arduous process to keep them sober. “They only test you one time for street drugs and it’s during the mandatory mini-camps that are usually in May,” he said, adding if they test you at mini-camp in May, you don’t get tested in August in training camp.

“Guys that like to smoke marijuana, they hope to get tested in May so get it out of the way, they can smoke all summer and go to training camp not worrying about it,” Foote said, adding, “The NFL doesn’t really try to deter guys from smoking marijuana.”

“They don’t care if you do or don’t, they only test you once a year.”


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