Ever since New Orleans Saints kicker Garrett Hartley tested positive for Adderall back in 2009 (he said he took the stimulant in order to stay awake during a long drive at night), the drug of choice on college campuses across America has become the drug of choice in America’s favorite sports league.
At least, that’s what the players want you to believe. The NFL has strict rules about protecting player privacy following positive drug tests. The league announces which players have tested positive for performance enhancers (and suspends the players it catches), but it never reveals which substance the players were caught using.
As a result, the number of suspensions for admitted steroid use has plummeted to almost zero this season — and the number of suspensions for supposed Adderall use has skyrocketed. Could it be because one drug carries far less social stigma and because players can blame their positive tests on whatever they want with no fear of the truth coming out? Of course.
Though it’s not hard to believe that a tiny placekicker like Hartley might take Adderall, it becomes much more difficult to believe that every other player who’s been suspended this year is also on the drug — and none of them is on steroids. This past week alone, three NFL cornerbacks, Richard Sherman and Brandon Browner of the Seahawks, and Eric Wright of the Buccaneers, have blamed positive tests on Adderall.
When asked about the recent rash of supposed Adderall use among players, Chicago Bears wide receiver Brandon Marshall said he’s heard of players taking even more bizarre drugs in order to get a competitive advantage on the field.
“I don’t know too much about Adderall,” Marshall told Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune. “I know guys, it is such a competitive league, guys try anything just to get that edge. I’m fortunate enough to be blessed with size and some smarts to give me my edge. But some guys, they’ll do whatever they can to get an edge. I’ve heard of some crazy stories. I’ve heard (of) guys using like Viagra, seriously. Because the blood is supposedly thin, some crazy stuff. So, you know, it’s kind of scary with some of these chemicals that are in some of these things so you have to be careful.”
Marshall says that NFL players are so concerned with getting an edge on their opponents that they’re apparently popping dick pills.
Besides running the risk of getting caught and suspended by the league, don’t those players worry about their drug use being, oh, how do we put this… visible while they’re on the field and on television? Is having slightly thinned blood, which may or may not be delivered to your muscles more efficiently than normal blood, really worth the risk of popping an erection in front of millions of fans?