HGH testing still stalled at starting block

Still there: The Colts say Curtis Painter, right, will start again this week as Kerry Collins recovers from a concussion.

Associated Press

Still there: The Colts say Curtis Painter, right, will start again this week as Kerry Collins recovers from a concussion.

Blood testing for human growth hormone is going nowhere fast in the NFL.

Everyone says they want it — so much so that it was included in the collective bargaining agreement this summer. That, however, is where any agreement ends.

The odds of implementing tests this season dwindled as the union raised objections to detection methods and scientists dismissed those concerns as invalid.

Testing that was to be in place at the start of the season was delayed as the union tried to gather information about a blood test that the World Anti-Doping Agency, which is responsible for the data, isn't willing to provide.

Even if the program starts, the fact that the test in question can only detect HGH in a person's system for about 24 hours means only the sloppiest of dopers would get caught.

"Every test has some sort of politics," said renowned anti-doping scientist Don Catlin, who runs his own lab in the Los Angeles area. "This is the same test they've been using all along. It's not a great test because a great test has more longevity than 24 hours."

Still, Catlin has no problem with using this method — because there's nothing better out there — though he says WADA's reluctance to turn over data on the 7-year-old test, or to have information about it published in peer-reviewed literature, "is a tough position to justify in this day and age."

The union has not agreed to the testing methods, and no meetings are scheduled about it.

COLTS: Curtis Painter will make his second straight start at quarterback Sunday against Kansas City. Coach Jim Caldwell said Painter played well enough in Monday night's loss against the Bucs to earn the job — and Kerry Collins (concussion) has not been cleared.

JAGUARS: Defensive end Aaron Kampman has been cleared to play, but coach Jack Del Rio says he likely will hold him out until next week. Kampman has been out all season after having knee surgery.

JETS: Center Nick Mangold is listed as questionable but will likely start against New England after missing two games with a high right ankle sprain.

PATRIOTS: The team released running back Eric Kettani from its practice squad after he was ordered back to duty with the Navy. Kettani said in a tweet that he had arrived at the USS Klakring, a frigate in Jacksonville. By releasing him rather than putting him on the reserve list, "we have the option to bring him back if other things get worked out," coach Bill Belichick said.

TEXANS: Star receiver Andre Johnson expects to miss a couple of weeks after a minor procedure on his right hamstring.

VIKINGS: Long snapper Cullen Loeffler signed a three-year extension, ensuring that the league's longest-tenured kicking trio will remain intact. He, punter Chris Kluwe and kicker Ryan Longwell have played together for six years. That's longer than any other active trio, according to STATS, LLC.

FINES: The league fined Ravens All-Pro defensive tackle Haloti Ngata, Redskins linebackers Rob Jackson and Perry Riley and Raiders defensive lineman Richard Seymour $15,000 for hits on Sunday.

HGH testing still stalled at starting block 10/08/11 [Last modified: Saturday, October 8, 2011 12:06am]

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