(The Sports Xchange) - The NFL has reached out to the NFL Players' Association in hopes of joining its study of using marijuana as a potential pain management tool for the league's ailing players, according to The Washington Post.
The NFL currently bans all marijuana use, but wrote a letter to the NFLPA stating it would like to work with the association on its research of the subject, The Post reports.
The NFLPA has yet to say whether or not it will work jointly with the league.
"We look forward to working with the Players Association on all issues involving the health and safety of our players," NFL executive vice president of communications Joe Lockhart told The Post.
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Last January, NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith told The Post the association was crafting a proposal to the league that would soften the harsh punishments for players who use the drug.
"I do think that issues of addressing it more in a treatment and less punitive measure is appropriate," Smith said. "I think it's important to look at whether there are addiction issues. And I think it's important to not simply assume recreation is the reason it's being used."
NFL players who test positive for having more than 35 nanograms per milliliter of tetrahydrocannabinol, or "THC" in marijuana, in their system must enter an intervention program.
Penalties include fines and even suspensions ranging from two games to a full season.
(Editing by Steve Keating in Toronto)