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Suspended Dallas Cowboys defensive end Randy Gregory remains in the NFL’s drug rehab program, and his status for the 2019 NFL season is now a guessing game.
The Cowboys do not know what is going to happen with Gregory after he flunked his fourth drug test, and was placed on the suspended list.
Say this for Gregory, he is consistent.
The Cowboys are hopeful the NFL will not be harsh on Gregory, and that he will potentially be available for the entire season.
Per the rules of the suspension, Gregory did not attend Day 1 of the Cowboys’ minicamp held on Tuesday and won’t attend Days 2 or 3, either.
The Cowboys are well-versed in these matters; they know the NFL will address Gregory when it is good and ready. It won’t be this month. It will be sometime in July, and it will be at commissioner Roger Goodell’s convenience.
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones may be too late to affect change for his favorite “ugly baby,” but if he is serious about the NFL re-shaping its dated stance towards marijuana he is going to have to go at it alone.
If the the NFL is to change its stance on weed, the priority will have to come from the owners rather than the players.
When I asked Dallas Cowboys cornerback Byron Jones, who is the team’s player representative for the NFL Player’s Association, if he thought the union would try to change the league’s policy about marijuana during the next round of labor negotiations he said, “I don’t think so.
“I don’t think it’s been a major problem. It’s not going to be a huge argument on our part.”
At least to Byron Jones, the players have more pressing issues to address in this current labor negotiations than the penalty for players who are busted for smoking marijuana.
For most players, this policy is not a pressing point because most guys know how to avoid getting caught. They typically know when the weed test is coming, and will stop using long enough to avoid detection.
The odd element is that while America increasingly grows more accepting of marijuana use, the NFL continues to embrace a Nancy Reagan-like demonization of weed. Prescribing a far more potent opioid, which in recent years the use of has become an epidemic, remains perfectly legal and acceptable but marijauna does not.
“The policy is already established; you use an opiod for an injury,” Bryon said. “There is still the stigma around marijuana use and that’s the way it is.”
Nine teams in the NFL are located in the 10 states where weed has been legalized for medical and recreational purposes. Additionally, there are 20 states where weed has been legalized medically.
America is in a different place regarding weed, but the NFL is not.
“When it comes down to it the NFL is going to do what is in its best interests. That’s how it goes,” Cowboys veteran receiver Randall Cobb said. “If you look at the laws that are in place for domestic violence, the NFL has policies in place based on their opinion of the situation. It’s not based on what law and order says.
“Look at (Cowboys running back) Ezekiel Elliott situation a few years ago. He was suspended six-games and he was never charged with anything.”
At least on the Zeke situation you could understand the league’s over-reach because it wanted nothing to do with the perception it was not hard on any potential domestic violence incident.
But to suspend a guy for smoking weed is needless in an era where America regards such an infraction in the same category as driving 70 in a 60.
“America still cares, though,” Cobb said. “Not everywhere, but in some place they obviously do.”
That would include the NFL front office.
If Jerry Jones wants the NFL to re-think its stance towards players smoking weed, so a guy like Randy Gregory is not punished for such an infraction, he’s going to have to raise the issue himself.
The players have bigger issues to deal with than a weed suspension.