NFL leg­end calls out do­mes­tic vi­o­lence is­sue

The Myanmar Times - - Sport -

ONCE again, the NFL is tak­ing heat over its han­dling of a player in­volved in al­le­ga­tions of do­mes­tic vi­o­lence,which means that, once again, ques­tions are be­ing raised about com­mis­sioner Roger Good­ell’s lead­er­ship.

On Oc­to­ber 23, dur­ing an ESPN panel’s dis­cus­sion of sus­pended Gi­ants kicker Josh Brown, Randy Moss be­came the lat­est to crit­i­cise Good­ell. The for­mer wide re­ceiver noted that, at a time when the NFL is cur­rently mak­ing a show of sup­port for a ma­jor women’s health is­sue, the Brown case sends a con­tra­dic­tory sig­nal.

“[In] breast can­cer aware­ness month, where we’re sit­ting here sup­port­ing the women and then you come up with this Josh Brown, where it doesn’t seem like we are sup­port­ing women,” Moss said. “So I think the NFL re­ally needs to take a deep look. I think own­ers are mad, and Roger Good­ell, he is the big­gest rea­son to all of this stuff that’s fall­ing down­hill with the NFL.”

On Oc­to­ber 21, Brown was placed on the com­mis­sioner’s ex­empt list, mean­ing that he was es­sen­tially sus­pended with pay, while the NFL looks into doc­u­ments that emerged this week in which the kicker ad­mit­ted to abus­ing his wife. Ex­ist­ing al­le­ga­tions of do­mes­tic vi­o­lence had been enough for the league to hand Brown a onegame sus­pen­sion to start the sea­son, but given that a pol­icy en­acted in the wake of the Ray Rice scan­dal al­lows for six-game bans, some won­dered why the kicker’s was so short.

In ad­di­tion to Good­ell, the Gi­ants are fac­ing crit­i­cism for re-sign­ing the 37-year-old Brown to a two-year, US$4 mil­lion con­tract in April, given that the al­le­ga­tions had first sur­faced in May 2015 – charges in that in­ci­dent were dropped by Wash­ing­ton state prose­cu­tors shortly there­after. Good­ell has in­sisted that the league was un­able to ob­tain de­tails of that in­ci­dent, but the King County, Wash­ing­ton, sher­iff’s depart­ment de­liv­ered a sharp re­buke to that claim, and some me­dia out­lets were able to pro­cure pre­vi­ously undis­closed in­for­ma­tion.

The Brown case is the lat­est do­mes­tic vi­o­lence-re­lated em­bar­rass­ment for the NFL and for Good­ell in par­tic­u­lar, who was widely panned for his han­dling of Rice, Adrian Peter­son and Greg Hardy. And that’s not to men­tion other episodes, such as De­flate­gate and Boun­ty­gate, in which the com­mis­sioner’s use of his author­ity was crit­i­cised.

On Oc­to­ber 23, an­other for­mer NFL star turned ESPN an­a­lyst, Tedy Br­uschi, said, “I am just numb to the in­com­pe­tence of the NFL.” The league, of course, is not en­tirely to blame for the ac­tions of its play­ers, but it is re­mark­able how of­ten it seems to bun­gle the af­ter­math of those ac­tions, par­tic­u­larly when do­mes­tic vi­o­lence is in­volved. –

Photo: AFP

NYGiants kicker Josh Brown (right) ad­mits com­mit­ting do­mes­tic vi­o­lence upon his ex-wife in let­ters, mes­sages and a jour­nal, ac­cord­ing to po­lice doc­u­ments re­lated to a 2015 ar­rest.

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