A little over a month ago, the NFL announced that they would not be disciplining any player conduct infractions that may occur during the work stoppage period. Really, I’m not sure why they felt inclined to make that announcement, considering that they technically have no right to discipline anyone while there is no collective bargaining agreement in place. Anyway, ever since this announcement has been made, the police blotter has been…how shall we say?…blotting. I’ll begin with some of the more tame accusations and end this with some of the more serious offenses. And if we’re playing the word association game, when it comes to the word “tame” when speaking of athletes and their scrapes with the law, we’re usually talking about really stupid offenses.
Cowboys “young” receiver Dez Bryant was ejected from an upscale Dallas shopping mall after he allegedly broke out into a profanity-laced tirade after he and his buddies were confronted by “Paul Blart Mall Cop” about their sagging pants. Now, sagging pants is a phenomenon that I’ve never quite understood. I can’t even fathom being comfortable with my belt wrapped around my upper thighs and displaying my “Underoos” to the world…but I digress. This is beside my point. Okay, maybe one more point. Sagging pants is said to have evolved from prison culture. In the “joint”, if you are sagging your pants, it conveys the message to the other inmates that you are…“spoken for”. Now, I ask…Why do young people want to walk around these days looking like Bubba’s b*tch? Well, I can’t blame it entirely on the younger folks, because people of my own generation have done and many STILL do this. But is it a cause worth fighting for to the point of ejection from a public place and involvement of “the law”? Come on Dez.
Next we have Philadelphia Eagles’ snap-jumping left tackle, Jason Peters. Peters was arrested in Shreveport, LA for violating the city’s noise ordinance due to the volume of the music coming from his car. When asked to turn the volume of his car stereo down, he provided resistance. When asked to produce his driver’s license, he refused, prompting the officer to tack on another charge of resisting arrest. He was later released on $628 bond. Maybe this is why he has trouble hearing the snap count.
Next up is Tennessee Titans’ receiver Kenny Britt. Britt allegedly raced away from police officers who were attempting to pull him over for speeding in his hometown of Bayonne, New Jersey. When the officers finally caught up with him, he and a male passenger were walking away from the vehicle. Britt initially denied being the driver, but later came down off that story. He is charged with eluding officers, hindering apprehension, and obstruction of governmental function. Not to mention that his passenger was found with drugs in his possession.
Probably the biggest example from the “Stupid Files”, we have Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Mike Vrabel, who was arrested for theft at the Belterra Casino in Florence, Indiana, for allegedly stealing alcohol. HUH??? REALLY Mike??? In addition to being a Superbowl winning linebacker, Vrabel is also a named plaintiff in the players’ antitrust lawsuit against the league, AND a member of the NFLPA’s Executive Committee. We would think he’d know better, but we obviously can’t put ANYTHING past ANYBODY. He was released 5 hours after being booked on $600 bond. In Indiana, this offense is considered a Class D felony, so Mike “I wanna get twisted for free” Vrabel faces a sentence of 6 months to 3 years in prison for his boneheaded decision. However, I’m sure he’ll never see a day behind bars. We all know how this goes.
Next we have Green Bay Packers’ defensive end Johnny Jolly, who for a while, was actually IN jail, and had remained there until his April 20th court hearing, where he pleaded guilty to codeine possession, a felony drug charge. Police found 600 grams of codeine in his car when he was stopped in Houston, Texas back in March. At the time, he was already on probation for a similar charge stemming from a 2008 arrest. He was in jeopardy of facing jail time if convicted, considering a conviction would have been a violation of his probation. However, like many professional athletes, he got off rather easy. His plea landed him a 90-day stint in rehab and 5 years of probation, which is being termed “deferred adjudication”. The District Attorney essentially dismissed the latest case because Jolly pleaded to the prior case.
Our next contestant on “The Blotter is Right” is Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ cornerback Aqib Talib. Talib AND HIS MOTHER Okolo Talib allegedly fired a gun at his sister’s boyfriend during an incident in Garland, Texas. He was later released on $25,000 bond and faces up to 20 years in “the pokey” (sagging his pants for the aforementioned “Bubba”) if convicted. I have a question about this one: How the hell can two people fire one gun? I guess it could have been a “pop-pop-pass” situation. Who knows? Someone should probably just take the rap for this one and bring it to conclusion. But who takes the rap?…The family bread winner…or the family matriarch? Considering Okolo Talib’s alleged behavior, I may be exaggerating her role in the family, but you never know. Maybe this is the only way she knows how to be Mama Lion, and Mama Lion must protect her cubs, right?
Lastly (and not because there aren’t more…just that I set out to write a blog, not a book…THIS TIME!), we have three NFL players who were actually the victims of the news on the police blotter…or were they? In a 5 day span, two NFL players were stabbed, both allegedly by the ladies in their lives. Miami Dolphins’ receiver Brandon Marshall was stabbed in the stomach by his wife, who claims it was done in self defense. Considering Brandon Marshall’s history of domestic violence, I’m not sure if there is anyone on the planet who doesn’t believe her. “Oh what a tangled web we weave.” Denver Broncos’ defensive end Jason Hunter was allegedly stabbed by his girlfriend, but both players are expected to make full and speedy recoveries. I guess these NFL wives and girlfriends aren’t used to these guys being around so much at this time of year. Maybe they’re a bit agitated with this lockout “cramping their styles”. In addition to these domestic stabbings, Washington Redskins receiver Brandon Banks was also stabbed in an altercation at a DC nightclub back in February.
The NFL lockout began on March 12. From March 12 till today. there have been 10 NFL players arrested during that period alone. The aforementioned few were just some of the more notable arrests that have taken place during this tumultuous off-season, and I haven’t even mentioned Albert Haynesworth and his TWO arrests since last season ended. The NFL and its players need to hurry and get a deal done because these players are OBVIOUSLY bored. They need to be at some OTA’s or something else constructive/time-consuming, so they won’t be “sagging” in Malls, banging wack rappers at 200 decibels, “sippin’ on that sizzurp”, stealing booze, running from cops, groping “ta-tas”, getting shanked themselves, or trying to “murk” their potential bothers in law. They’d better hurry before next season is yet another remake of “The Longest Yard”.
Devin “Dev Mac” McMillan of The War Room, for War Room Sports