National Felon League

by - March 29, 2010 - - 1 Comment »

I did not come up with that headline. It has been around for a while. However, I don’t know if it has fully sunk in with everyone. I still feel like people brand the NBA as the “thug league”, when I would bet that the NFL’s track record is much worse. There have been approximately 500 NFL arrests since 2000. I couldn’t find the number on the NBA but I’d be shocked if the football players don’t have David Stern’s league beat by more than the longest yard, even after adjusting for roster size. (If you have the NBA arrest numbers and I am somehow wrong, please call me out on it.)

Just today I read about Joey Porter being investigated for a DUI, Santonio Holmes getting hit with a lawsuit alleging he threw a glass at a woman’s face and further fallout from the Ben Roethlisberger sexual assault mess. I’m not saying that the NBA doesn’t have its problems. Agent Zero and his artillery locker would prove me wrong immediately. What I am saying is that the problem is far worse in the NFL and that people tend to ignore it. (If I had more time, I’d go through the list and eliminate the arrests for weed and other dumb stuff. It is time we stopped arresting athletes, or anyone else, for marijuana possession.)

Just because Roger Goodell swiftly suspends someone and condemns their actions does not mean that some NFL players wouldn’t hesitate to shoot you in the face and that many others are probably beating their wives as we speak. The sport itself doesn’t exactly lend itself to good behavior. These guys are trained to violently go after the opposition. And they are crushed by their coaches if their aggression levels wane. Plus, they’re pumped up on all sorts of “supplements.”

All of this is virtually ignored because the NFL is so popular and powerful. People will overlook it because they love it (as do I) and it is easy to point fingers at the NBA because the stars are glorified and the players don’t wear helmets, thus making them less recognizable to the general public. But it is time that more attention is paid and sweeping changes are made to alleviate this problem because Sheriff Goodell’s fines and suspensions are obviously not enough.

I’m not sure what those changes should be. Maybe the NFL (and the NBA) need to hire an outside consultant to come up with a plan. Maybe trusted and respected players should be assigned as mentors to younger and troubled players. Maybe these things are already in place. I don’t know. Still, whatever they do isn’t working as there are obviously too many transgressions taking place. I’m not trying to imply that all NFL dudes are bad guys either. That is not the case. More of them are great guys than are not. In fact, nearly all of the guys I’ve met have been cool as hell. But the problem still exists.

And yes, I am an NBA apologist. But I’m also right. So there.

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One Response to “National Felon League”

  1. Dan says:

    and dont you get the sense that ocho cinco is villainized just because hes the most flamboyant star the nfl has to offer. as controversial as the guy seems to be he really doesn’t do anything wrong except dance when he gets a touch down and the dude give half his paycheck back to the league for that

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