According to a lawsuit filed in May by a group of eight retired NFL players, the league didn’t just condone the use and abuse of prescription painkillers; they facilitated it. The group suing the league has since grown to over 1300 former players, and apparently the federal government has taken an interest in the case:

The players’ lawyer Steve Silverman said that, “We are pleased to learn that the DEA and United States Department of Justice are also taking our clients’ allegations seriously and are actively protecting the welfare of NFL players.”

The NFL, predictably, has declined to comment on the story or the investigation. However, former prosecutor and sports agent Robert Boland seems to think that the league may be able to get around these serious allegations. “I don’t think the NFL loves the fact that there is a drug investigation,” he said. “But in the end, the NFL may be able to successfully say this is a club matter.”

Even if the NFL does manage to avoid legal action, the PR headache will be enough to get them to take these allegations seriously.

RELATED: Former NFL Players File a Lawsuit Claiming the League Illegally Provided Them With Medications and Painkillers

[via The Big Lead]