Thursday September 11th, 2014

The NFL and NFLPA could vote on a new drug policy as early as Friday, reports ESPN.

Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports originally reported that the vote could come Thursday night, but according to ESPN a vote won't be conducted then because two of the teams -- the Baltimore Ravens and the Pittsburgh Steelers -- are playing Thursday night and are not in position to vote.

ESPN also reports that the announcement could be delayed because of "legal wrangling" and that a condition of the new policy would be that certain players currently serving drug suspensions under the old policy would have their suspensions altered.

If the new policy is approved, it could result in players currently suspended such as Josh Gordan, Wes Welker and Orlando Scandrick having their suspensions reduced. 

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A report earlier this week from ESPN said the vote would come Tuesday. A subsequent report Wednesday from USA Today said a vote was unlikely to come before Friday.

Major policy changes said to be under consideration include raising the threshold for a positive marijuana test and instituting a program to test for human growth hormone. 

According to La Canfora's report, one issue being discussed is the reinstatement of players who failed certain drug tests after March 11, the start of the league year. Cleveland Browns receiver Josh Gordon, whose positive test came before March 11, could be "grandfathered in," according to La Canfora.

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Under the current NFL policy, THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, must be present in the blood at a level of 15 nanograms per millileter in order to trigger a positive test. The World Anti-Doping Agency, which oversees Olympic drug testing, raised its threshold for a positive test from 15 ng/ml to 150 ng/ml last summer.

- Dan Gartland and Molly Geary

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