Brandon Marshall: Some NFL players use Viagra to get an `edge’ - KMSP-TV

Brandon Marshall: Some NFL players use Viagra to get an `edge’

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

Chicago Bears wide receiver Brandon Marshall caught more than just passes Wednesday as he was asked why he thinks some NFL players decide to use performance enhancing drugs.

His response caught a lot of attention.

"I'm fortunate enough to be blessed with size and smarts to give me my edge, but some guys, they'll do whatever they can to get an edge," Mashall said. "I've heard crazy stories, I've heard guys using like, Viagra. Seriously, because the blood supposedly thins, I don't know."

At Bear's practice today, Offensive Coordinator Mike Tice was also asked what he thought of the idea.

"No I've never heard of such a thing. He's got to be making that up. He's a clown," Tice said.

Although it may seem surprising, Marshall isn't making it up.

"I had heard of soccer players at the international level more so," says Dr. Ajay Nehra, the Director of Men's Health in Urology at Rush University Medical Center.

Nehra says some athletes have chosen to utilize Viagra, as it relaxes the blood vessels, increases blood flow and even improves air flow within the lungs. But, Dr. Nehra says it makes sense, just not everywhere.

"I think the premise is, particularly at higher altitudes, they would enhance an individual's performance," Dr. Nehra says. "So, if a team is going up to a state such as Colorado, absolutely, it would make sense."

Although the NFL says the drug is not banned, doctors believe it is a type of performance enhancer.

"Yes, but not in the sense as you and I would appreciate medications like testosterone, for example. They're improving an individual's exercise ability and exercise tolerance," says Dr. Nehra.

Dr. Nehra also says for most men, taking Viagra to perform on the field is safe. He doesn't recommend it for men who are combining medications or for those with hypertension or non-diagnosed heart disease.

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