NFL commissioner Roger Goodell took an HGH test recently and was only too happy to tell USA Today's Jarrett Bell about it:
Q: In the past, the validity of the HGH tests have been a concern. What is it that makes you feel the testing has improved enough that you'll have a reliable test that needs to be incorporated as part of your drug policy?
RG: "Anytime you're in the drug-testing area, technology is changing. Technology is improving. It's important for us in protecting the integrity of the league, which is my No. 1 responsibility, to make sure that we have the best drug program. There are advancements in the testing methodology.
"I just had my HGH tested in the last couple of weeks. I wanted to see what was involved in the testing. They came in here at 9:30 in the morning, completely unannounced, and I went through the procedure. The same one our players would go through."
Q: So, did your test come back clean?
RG: "I can't disclose it because of the confidential nature of it. Let me put it this way: I'm proud of my results."
2. He's proud of his results? It's not the SAT or one of those art school tests. How can you be proud of not failing a drug test for human growth hormone? Is he also proud when the doctor tells him he doesn't have scurvy? There are only three ways to react after hearing the results of a drug test: relief, disappointment or complete lack of surprise. Unless Goodell has been spending his offseason hanging around with Andy Pettitte, the HGH test shouldn't have told him anything he didn't already know.
3. I may be mistaken about the NFL's intended plan for HGH testing, but wouldn't positive tests eventually be made public? Even though the specifics of the test may not be released, a player's suspension would have to be, right? Where's the confidentiality in that?
4. Taking a test doesn't mean Goodell knows what it's like to go through drug testing. I can climb a ladder into my window or throw some water on a fire in a stove, it doesn't mean I know what it's like to be a fireman. What was supposed to happen here? Derrick Mason hears that Goodell got some blood drawn and now he and his fellow players are supposed to capitulate on the league's drug-testing plan? Goodell's publicity stunts (like his $1 salary because of the work stoppage) never seem to go over like you imagine he thinks they will. Enough with the sideshow games, Roger. Just get a deal done.