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NFL roundup: Rams owner buys L.A. land

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NFL roundup: Rams owner buys L.A. land
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St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke recently bought 60 acres of land in Inglewood, Calif., according to multiple reports.

Kroenke made the purchase through an affiliated holding company.

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The land is located between the Forum and Hollywood Park. According to the Los Angeles Times, the land could possibly serve as a development for a new NFL stadium.

However, Kroenke has owned large amounts of land in California and other places for a long period of time and has made a significant amount of money through land development. It is possible Kroenke is merely adding to his land for non-NFL purposes.

A clause in the Rams’ lease with the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis is set to kick in at the end of the 2014 season. If the stadium is not upgraded to one of the eight top NFL venues by then, the lease will become a year-to-year deal beginning in 2015.

Kroenke has not publicly addressed the Rams’ stadium situation.

Packers’ Finley        expected to be cleared

Green Bay Packers tight end Jermichael Finley, who suffered a serious neck injury that required surgery this past season, said he expects to be cleared for contact soon, according to ProFootballTalk.com.

Finley told PFT on Friday that his doctor expects to give Finley clearance for contact within the next three or four weeks. Finley said he was 99.9 percent certain he would be cleared.

Finley suffered his neck injury in an October 20 game against the Cleveland Browns. He had single-fusion surgery on C-3 and C-4 vertebrae as a result.

Pot to stay on              banned substance list

Despite the legalization of marijuana in the two states represented by teams in the Super Bowl, pot will remain on the National Football League’s banned substance list, said commissioner Roger Goodell on Friday.

Both Colorado and Washington, home of the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks, who will clash in the NFL’s championship game on Sunday at MetLife Stadium, have legalized pot, prompting some to question if the league should simply stop testing for marijuana and abide by state laws.

Washington state and Colorado voted in 2012 to legalize recreational marijuana use, though the drug remains illegal under federal law.

Goodell made it clear during his annual state of the league address ahead of Sunday’s showcase that the NFL will continue to take a serious and dim view on players testing positive for pot.

“This has been something that has been asked several times and I’ll try to be as clear as I possibly can,” said Goodell. “It is still an illegal substance on a national basis.

“It’s something that’s part of our collective bargaining agreement with our players.

“It is questionable with respect to the positive impact but there is certainly some very strong evidence to the negative impacts, including addiction and other issues.”

Advocates of legal pot are using the Super Bowl to promote their message. On five billboards near the site of the big game in New Jersey, the Marijuana Policy Project questions the NFL’s ban on pot use by players, asserting in one that pot is “safer than alcohol … and football.”

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll joined the debate earlier in the week, saying the league should not rule out allowing players to use medical marijuana to manage pain, if medical science supports the idea.

Goodell did not rule out the possibility but on Friday again reiterated his stand that the league would follow the lead of doctors in determining whether to drop its opposition to players’ use of the drug.

“We’ll continue to follow the medicine,” said Goodell. “Our experts right now are not indicating we should change our policy in any way, we are not actively considering that at this point and time.

“But if it does down the road some time, that’s something we would never take off the table if we could benefit our players at the end of the day.

“So I don’t see any change in the near future.”

Asked if he would submit to a random test of marijuana, Goodell did not hesitate, drawing a hearty laugh from the media with his quick retort.

“I am randomly tested,” smiled Goodell. “And I am happy to say that I am clean.”

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