Football Is Secondary
The headlines of Week 2 in the NFL had more to do with domestic violence and child abuse rather than the action on the field. I’m sure the NFL would rather have it where they were defending their stance on concussions than on domestic violence.
This all could have been avoided if commissioner Roger Goodell had suspended former Baltimore Ravens RB Ray Rice for more than two games for punching his now wife in an elevator. Since the video of what happened inside that elevator was released to the public the NFL and Goodell specifically has had to defend themselves and answer some tough, but necessary questions.
What is obvious to me about all of this is that it is wrong to hit someone. Man, woman or child. The immediate reaction is too call for people to be fired, put in jail forever or be shamed to the point where they can never step foot outside.
I want to ask one simple question. Put yourself in their shoes. Those who have either done or are accused of doing some of these terrible acts. Wouldn’t you want to be given a chance to defend yourself without fear of losing all you have been given?
Me asking that question does not excuse what they are accused of doing. I am simply taking the viewpoint that I would want to be given a chance to defend myself. Far too much these days with the instant reaction that social media gives us we immediately react with our emotions at an all-time high. That’s not always a good thing i.e, Twitter.
As it stands right now for Ray Rice, he’s probably not going to be given another chance. That is of his doing and no one else’s. Panthers DE Greg Hardy could be headed for that same fate as well since he was convicted by a judge, but Hardy has appealed to a grand jury his conviction. 49ers DE Ray McDonald has yet to be charged, but that could change for him.
Rice has been suspended indefinitely and Hardy was put on the exempt list which bars him from all team activities. Cardinals RB Jonathan Dwyer was recently arrested for domestic violence and was immediately put on the exempt list as well.
This exempt list is being utilized in the wake of the Vikings putting RB Adrian Peterson on it for his charge of endangering a child. No matter if you were whipped, spanked or flicked as a child I don’t see what a 4-year old could do to get lashed by a stick or ‘switch’ or whatever the hell you want to call it. I’m willing to give him his day in court. He’ll have to live with the consequences of his actions.
The question has been asked, what are the NFL’s principles? Player safety has been at the top of that list for some time now since the concussion issue. There has always been a problem with some players off field behavior. Some were convicted of drunk driving that resulted in death. Others were convicted drug dealers and one is currently charged with murder.
In essence we all have our own set of principles and we know our convictions will eventually tell us that something we like just doesn’t feel right. This whole thing doesn’t feel right and we should be asking ourselves what is important right now? Our sense of right and wrong or our teams position in the standings?
It is a perfect time for the league to get out of this ahead and never lead from behind again. Individual teams are taking action albeit some were a bit late, but they aren’t waiting for the league to. When sponsors begin to question your motives that will get their attention. This shouldn’t have ballooned to its current state. It should have been kicked in the butt quickly.