NEW YORK – The NFL players’ union proposed Thursday conducting a study of players that accurately reflects the natural level of human growth hormone in their systems.

The union has claimed its players might have a higher natural level of HGH than the general population, and it also has balked at testing procedures approved by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) that the league has recommended.

Instead the NFLPA is proposing “a comprehensive HGH testing program that begins with a population study” of players to establish a test standard “that accurately reflects the population of NFL players.”

When the lockout ended last summer, the collective bargaining agreement included provisions for HGH testing if the union approved the process. Instead the NFLPA has asked for more information, which it says it has not received.

A league spokesman said of the union’s proposal: “The proposal is deficient in numerous respects and consistent with the NFLPA’s ongoing strategy to delay testing as long as possible.”