Former NFL All-Pro player Kyle Turley says marijuana has given him his life back after struggling with injuries and pain meds following a nine-year career as an offensive lineman with the Saints, Rams and Chiefs.
Turley spoke at last month's Southwest Cannabis Conference + Expo in Phoenix. He told the crowd that he began medicating with pot just eight months ago, and since then hasn't taken as much as an aspirin.
'Cannabis will save football,' Turley contends.
During his years in the NFL and at San Diego State – Turley was drafted by New Orleans with the seventh overall pick in 1998 – he sustained back, knee and head injuries. This led to depression, anxiety and suicidal tendencies.
"Cannabis helps with our minds," he says. "You can use it and not get high."
Turley founded the Gridiron Cannabis Coalition with the hope of changing the NFL's marijuana policy. Currently, players are regularly suspended after failing more than one drug test for "substances of abuse" (usually pot).
"That we're not allowed to do that is criminal," he adds.
Turley was selected to the All-Pro teams in 2000 and 2003 as an offensive tackle. He retired in 2007. In 2010, the football star recorded a "country-metal" album and toured with Hank III.