Although Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis strongly and categorically denies any involvement in the latest performance enhancing drug controversy to hit the NFL, his statements are somewhat misleading, which raising questions as to why he said them at all.
Earlier this week leading up to the media events surrounding the run up to the Super Bowl, a story emerged that Lewis, who tore his triceps muscle earlier in the season, used a deer antler extract that contained a banned substance to help assist the healing process.
Sports Illustrated wrote on Tuesday that Lewis had taken 10 deer antler pills a day and used deer antler spray under his tongue every two hours after the injury, items reportedly provided by S.W.A.T.S., or Sports with Alternatives to Steroids. The spray that he allegedly used contains Insulin-like Growth Factor, or IGF-1, a substance banned by the NFL and most other sports leagues.
Lewis responded to the allegations by saying that he has never failed a drug test throughout his player career. His coach, John Harbaugh, reaffirmed that point multiple times when speaking after Lewis.
The problem with that statement, however, is that the league conducts no tests for IGF-1, which can only be detected through blood testing, which the NFL does not perform on players.
What this means is simply that whether or not Ray Lewis has failed a drug test has nothing to do with whether or not he has consumed natural Human Growth Hormone natural supplements like IGF-1.
The fact that he and his advisory team would point out the lack of failed drug tests, however, presumably knowing full well that players are not tested for such supplements, has raised a red flag for many, particularly in light of Lance Armstrong’s recent PED admission after categorically denying allegations for years and raising the issue of a history of clean drug tests.
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