We took a one-day hiatus around here yesterday to celebrate the birthday of the great nation of Canada. Coincidentally, Monday was also the five-year anniversary of Internet in Canada, and the 10-year anniversary of the national road system, which consists of one road (locally referred to as The Only Road).
That holiday was taken with the hopeful assumption that NFL players would stop their battle against common sense over the weekend, and refrain from driving after an evening of inebriation. And of course, yesterday we learned that those hopes and dreams for NFL sobriety behind wheels of vehicles nationwide were dashed once again.
So thanks, Eric Wright. There have been four other drunk driving incidents during this offseason involving NFL players, but Wright’s is a little different. He hurt someone.
The Tampa bay Buccaneers cornerback who was part of a trio of major signings during free agency was arrested early Monday morning and has been charged with a felony DUI after being involved in an accident that resulted in an injury to the other driver. It occurred near the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Thankfully, he’s not the Lions’ problem anymore after the 27-year-old left Detroit as a free agent, signing a five-year deal worth $37.5 million with that Bucs. But under a new proactive policy being used by authorities everywhere, being a former Lion is still a felony of sorts…
Look, we get it, and we always have. A rash of incidents over a short period of time will be widely viewed as a pandemic, and a rapidly spreading problem in need of an immediate solution. That attitude already existed in the public towards NFL players prior to Wright’s drunk driving this weekend, and his status as the fifth DUI/DWI offender since January isn’t helping.
But although one drunk driving incident is always one too many, please keep this in context, and remember that the NFL doesn’t have a drunk driving problem.
Right now rosters are still expanded, meaning that nearly 2,900 NFL players ventured out into the night socially this past weekend and they bumped, grinded, did a Dougie or whatever those crazy kids are doing these days, and then arrived home alive. Now, not all of them went to da club, but surely during a sunny and beautiful June/July weekend most were doing something fun that involved alcohol, and only one of them hit another car because of his drunkenness.
This is still isolated to the stupidity of a few morons, although admittedly the moron population in the league seems to be growing. But right now, the NFL isn’t any worse in terms of its drunk driving record than North America’s other professional sports leagues. In fact, it’s better.
And now the links part of the links post…
- Police are still looking for suspects in the Saturday morning party melee that ended with two shooting victims, and 49ers linebacker Aldon Smith getting stabbed. In other very, very related news, training camp can’t come soon enough. [Matt Barrows]
- It may not be fair, and Smith may have indeed been innocent and a victim of circumstance. But that matters very little to the doubters who questioned his maturity off the field prior to last spring’s draft, and now have more ammunition. [Mike Freeman]
- Now let’s return to far more rosy programming on what’s pretty much just your normal depressing Monday morning for those of you in the land where chasing beaver is a national pastime. Except now what feels like Monday is actually Tuesday, so you’ll work one day and it’s already hump day (love you too, long weekend). Anywho, do you think Tony Romo can win a championship? He asks that question, knowing there is no answer, and the discussion is a never ending one. [Todd Archer]
- Bart Scott thinks the Jets defense needs to start playing like the Jets defense from two years ago. [Pro Football Zone]
- A group of Redskins are being good little sports community members, as they’ve joined the pushed to get Bryce Harper voted into the MLB All-Star game. [D.C. Sports Bog]
- The NFLPA has asked for an inquiry into the Drew Brees contract negotiations, which means the union is doing what the union does best: looking out for the union. [Jim Trotter]
- There was incredibly heavy security at Michael Vick’s wedding over the weekend. That’s probably because he’s a celebrity, and celebrities need heavy security for life-changing events of that nature, and not because they hate the media. Although they probably do hate the media, and especially the sensationalist douchebags that put together the New York Post’s Page Six. [um, New York Post]
- Quick aside: although I clearly despise celebrity wedding reporting, Vick’s wedding menu of “chicken and waffles” sounds delightful.
- Trent Richardson wants to be the “best thing that ever happened to Cleveland,” meaning his bar is firmly locked in the highest position possible. [Gregg Rosenthal]