HGH testing finally begins in NFL
NEW YORK (AP) — The NFL has begun testing for human growth hormone for the first time, three years after the league and players’ union tentatively agreed to do so.
HGH testing was part of the 2011 labor agreement but was delayed because the NFL Players Association was not comfortable with the procedures or science involved. Both sides agreed last month on the new policy, which took effect Monday.
A total of 950 tests will be performed during the regular season, postseason and preseason. In the offseason, about 385 tests will be done. Less than one tablespoon of blood will be taken from each player.
Each week during the season, five players on eight teams will be chosen randomly for testing as part of the normal testing procedures under the NFL’s performance enhancing drug policy. No tests will occur on game days. Players subject to the blood testing must be on the active roster, practice squad or on injured reserve, and not already subject to reasonable-cause testing.
In the offseason, every player under contract not already undergoing reasonable-cause testing will be tested to a maximum of 90 per team.
One stumbling block in the agreement was the appeals process. Any appeal now will be heard by a neutral person, not by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell or someone he designated.
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Houston’s Foster criticizes Thursday night games
HOUSTON (AP) — Arian Foster isn’t a fan of Thursday night games, and doesn’t think anyone else is either.
Foster was asked what he thought about the midweek games as the Houston Texans prepare to meet AFC South foe Indianapolis in the weekly matchup this Thursday.
“Thursday night football is pretty — it’s annoying for players,” he said. “I don’t know one player that likes it. I really don’t know a fan that likes it, either. I think it’s just the league’s way of trying to generate more revenue.”
And Houston’s star running back, who is coming off a season-high 157 yards rushing in an overtime loss to the Cowboys, didn’t stop there.
“They emphasize concussions when they start getting hit with lawsuits and they care about the players’ safety, but Thursday night football is putting every player on the football field in danger,” he said, referring to the NFL. “Nobody is ready to play physically after a Sunday game. But you’ve got to go out there and do it.
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Dolphins’ Shelby suspended in wake of arrest
DAVIE, Fla. (AP) — Miami Dolphins reserve defensive lineman Derrick Shelby was suspended indefinitely after police used a Taser on him three times while arresting him on misdemeanor charges of resisting arrest and trespassing at a nightclub.
Shelby was suspended hours before Monday’s practice for conduct detrimental to the team. Coach Joe Philbin said he talked with Shelby, and said the Dolphins will gather more information before making a final determination on disciplinary action.
According to a Fort Lauderdale police report, nightclub security said Shelby was touching women without their permission early Saturday. Shelby appeared intoxicated, was ordered to leave several times by an officer and refused, the report said.
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Cardinals’ Dwyer pleads not guilty to hitting wife
PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona Cardinals running back Jonathan Dwyer pleaded not guilty on Monday to aggravated assault after being accused of assaulting his wife during two arguments at their Phoenix apartment.
Dwyer entered his plea to the felony and eight misdemeanors, including assault, at a brief arraignment in Maricopa County Superior Court.
Investigators have said Dwyer broke his wife’s nose with a head-butt during a July 21 argument, and the next day punched her and threw a shoe at his 17-month-old son, who wasn’t injured.