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football-622873_960_720Brad Lamm, CIP

The NFL rests on a bedrock of being able – masculine – solid. We use names like warriors and  even gladiators when referring to our heroes who are often praised for playing hurt and fighting in spite of pain.

Players have been trained to be tough and do anything to win. Yet the reality is the real winners have been the ones who don’t have to put on a uniform; sitting comfortably with their cocktails in their deluxe owners’ boxes. They stay busy cashing in on the players sweat and pain, not feeling any of the consequences many players deal with after being chewed up on the field during their careers.

A new lawsuit against the NFL shatters the myth of player as warrior, introducing a new one: ADDICTED NUMB MONSTER.

The allegations are these: players regularly endured pain and doping throughout their careers in the play at any cost culture driving the NFL. The league’s culture of NO PAIN – NO GAIN needs an enema if players are to put wellness over winning.

As someone who is exposed to the disease of addiction and dangerous health costs of drugs on a regular basis, I see people 1) get hurt, 2) get prescribed opiate painkillers and 3) get hooked.

The notion of walking into this deadly cycle is NFLnuts. It has got to NFLstop.

The league builds players up as super heroes, and pressures them to maintain levels of physical greatness impossible to maintain. The only answer becomes a sanctioned doping. lawsuit.

Owners are driving. Coaches are driving. Players are playing and all too often, they get hurt, get opiate-medicated and get addicted. Players are only doing what they have to do to keep up. They can be cut any time. Even if change results in a decreased output on the field from more players missing games, the league has a moral obligation to protect players like Mr. Hill, a plaintiff in the lawsuit, who at one point was homeless as a result of his addiction which began on the field.

The NFL also needs to do the right thing and cough up dough for treatment to their damaged  players and take responsibility for an issue they’ve neglected for far too long. Despite what’s happened in the past, the important thing is that we learn from it and move forward in the future and make changes to make the game safer.

Yes it’s a business but winning has all different costs. Wake up NFL! Time to make some changes.

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