Zac Boyer will be entering his third season covering the Washington Redskins for The Free Lance-Star this fall. Make sure to follow Zac on Twitter (@ZacBoyer) for the latest updates or e-mail him with any questions at email@example.com.
Cloud of PED report settles over Redskins
For as annoyed as the Redskins got from repeatedly answering questions about absent defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth over the last two months, they might wish today that the big fella was still the main topic of conversation.
That won’t be the case, though, after yesterday’s New York Times report connected a Redskins player to Dr. Anthony Galea, who was charged in U.S. district court yesterday with illegally distributing HGH, among other charges. Here’s my Redskins-centric story that ran today. You also must check out the ESPN report, which cited Canadian court documents that contained different details.
And if you want read the criminal complaint that reportedly connects Galea to the Redskins, I’ve got it for you here.
It shouldn’t surprise anyone at this point to learn that a pro athlete has used HGH–a substance banned by the NFL but one for which it does not test–or has violated their respective league’s collectively bargained policy on performance-enhancing drugs.
If Major League Baseball’s home run chase of 1998, the wide-ranging BALCO scandal and last week’s Brian Cushing re-vote have taught us anything, it’s that pro athletes have a huge incentive to use PEDs. They can make a player very rich and very successful.
But now the Redskins have been linked, and this isn’t going away.
The NFL undoubtedly will pursue the identity of the users in question. At the very least, that would result in a suspension once the league learns the name. The player(s) identity could be publicized if the Galea case goes to trial, or if investigators offer the information to the NFL.
The witch hunt that has already started could also take a toll. No doubt players are already talking about this and asking questions–if they didn’t already know the player’s identity. We’ll see how drastically that affects team chemistry and the atmosphere at Redskins Park.
The Redskins wrap up their first week of OTAs today, and players will be made available to the media. They’re going to face questions about it, and it’ll be interested to hear the responses. I’m guessing that they’ll vary from player to player, ranging from no comment to some impassioned words. I’m sure, however, they’d be happier talking about Haynesworth instead.