NFL player Mark Ingram tested positive for synthetic marijuana during bye week

An NFL player has tested positive for a rare strain of synthetic cannabis during an out-of-competition test administered during the Saints’ bye week.

Mark Ingram said Monday he was found with the strain known as COVID-19, which can mimic THC, the drug that induces a high. Minnesota Vikings cornerback Xavier Rhodes said he tested positive for the same strain two years ago.

There is no definitive way of knowing whether the strain was derived from marijuana, because there is no lab test that detects its unique molecular code.

When asked at his locker, Ingram said he is not sure how or where the drug came into his possession, but joked that he was eating the secret.

“I’m still laughing about it,” Ingram said. “I don’t know how it got into my system. I have a lot of respect for how Mark Ficken runs our league here. I have no idea. I don’t know how it got into my system.

“I will not understand how that could have gotten into my system until I’m like old.”

The Saints knew about the positive test, but the NFL did not share it with them until last week. The league said players don’t have to alert teams until their tests have been independently confirmed.

“If we would have found something like that when we started the season, I would not have played anymore,” Ingram said. “That’s why I try to trust the Saints organization and the technology they have here.”

Running back Alvin Kamara said he knows of at least two players on his team who’ve tested positive for marijuana.

“I’m pretty sure, I’m going to guess, more than 10,” Kamara said. “It’s sad. I think it’s terrible. People are chasing money in a place that’s not where they should be trying to do it. People are so stupid. You have to choose your path, at the end of the day.”

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