At the “Cannabis: An Alternative to Opiates in Pro Sports” South By Southwest panel on Sunday, Eben Britton campaigned for cannabis as a form of pain management for athletes. Britton played for six seasons in the NFL. While suiting up for Chicago and Jacksonville from 2009-14, Britton said he played multiple games after consuming cannabis and “I felt as though they were some of my best games, some of my best performances in times when my body was beat to hell…”
Joined on stage by entrepreneur Jim McAlpine and Flow Kana’s Amanda Reiman, Britton said that cannabis also provided him with clarity and emotional stability. He argued the NFL is too dependent on its players using pills, which can have negative side effects.
“The NFL is at a very critical time for themselves,” Britton said. “These issues, they can’t run from these issues. I think cannabis can not only have a positive effect for the well-being of their players, which we all know they don’t care about, but it can have a really positive effect on their bottom line.”
Later in the panel, Britton said children shouldn’t start playing football until they turn 14. Britton only has a daughter, but when asked, he said he likely wouldn’t let his hypothetical son participate in the sport.