NFL agrees to outside arbitration on positive HGH tests

Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Commisioner Roger Goodell agrees to cede control in the event of a positive HGH test.

The NFL and NFLPA haven't agreed to widespread human growth hormone testing yet, but did take an important step Thursday as both sides agreed to third party arbitration in the case of a positive test.

This would take power away from commissioner Roger Goodell to decide on punishment, putting it in the third party's hands. According to Pro Football Talk there is still some disagreement, as the league has not yet agreed to a third party deciding on appeals.

This is the next major agreement sides have made on the advancement of HGH testing. The first came via a population study, which will evaluate every player in the NFL to gain a better understanding of the growth hormone levels in current players. These tests won't have any bearing on possible suspensions, according to the agreement.

Currently 40 players are scheduled to be tested randomly each week for the presence of HGH. There are many issues yet to be resolved, including the appeal process and establishing guidelines for punishment concerning positive tests.

Major League Baseball presently has an HGH testing program, while the NBA and NHL are working with their respective unions on guidelines for testing.

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