Welcome back to another edition of King’s Court. After taking a week off to gather my thoughts, I have returned with right words to express how I feel about what is happening in the NFL off the field. Unfortunately for the NFL, there is a black cloud that is currently hanging over the league, with the Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson legal situations going on. Without further ado, the King’s Court is now open.
Ray Rice’s Domestic Violence Issue
Ray Rice was suspended for the first two games of the 2014 season for his involvement in a domestic abuse incident in an Atlantic City casino with his then fiancé Janay Palmer, who is now his wife. A video was released and in it you could see Rice dragging an unconscious Palmer out of an elevator. Last week, TMZ.com released the video of what took place inside of the elevator and it was downright disgusting, disturbing, and uncomfortable to watch. After the release of the video, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell upped Rice’s suspension to indefinite. The Baltimore Raven terminated the contract of Rice, thus making him a free agent. The NFL put in a new domestic violence policy which says first-time offenders in domestic abuse cases will be suspended six games and second-time offenders would be banned for life from the NFL. So wait, if that’s the new policy, why is Rice getting an indefinite suspension and not the six games? I’m all for Rice being punished for his heinous act, but the league has to show some consistency. Goodell made a reactionary decision to suspend Rice indefinitely after the elevator video was released, due to all the backlash that came from it. Goodell claimed he and the league saw that video for the first time when it was released by TMZ, but I don’t buy it. The National Football League is a multi-billion dollar, global conglomerate and they are trying to say they couldn’t obtain the video? That’s bogus to me, especially when a website like TMZ can get it. On top of that, when Goodell and Rice met earlier this summer to discuss what had transpired that night in Atlantic City, Rice told Goodell what had happened and it matched what was seen on that video. So if Goodell knew what happened inside the elevator, why was the initial suspension only two games?
Did Roger Goodell think the video would never be seen? Once he received all the negative backlash – which he deserved to hear – he tried to make a statement with the new indefinite suspension and the new policy, but it felt like it was reactionary. Many people called for Goodell’s job, which is a little but unfair to me. Did he make a mistake? Of course he did, but he was making an attempt to make up for it. A lot of people have wanted to see Goodell lose his position as NFL commissioner for a while now, but the man is human and does in fact make mistakes. With that said, he is in some hot water going forward with how he handles off-the-field situations involving the law and legal system.
The Ravens did the right thing by severing ties with Rice. Any man who lays his hands on a woman should not only not be employed, but also be in jail. No man should EVER hit a woman, no matter what the situation is. Rice isn’t the only NFL player involved in domestic abuse cases, as 49ers defensive lineman Ray McDonald, and Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy are involved in domestic abuse cases as well. Each team has taken a different route with their players as the 49ers are keeping him on the field until the legal process plays out, while the Panthers are not keeping Hardy on the field (more on this later). The NFL has drawn an unwanted black cloud over its image.
Floyd Mayweather’s Insensitive Comments
Floyd “Money” Mayweather is the best pound-for-pound boxer in the world today, with an unblemished professional record of 47-0. He is the ultimate showman, who is very confident, flashy, and flamboyant. He is the face of professional boxing, but he also has a history of domestic violence issues. He spent two months in jail after a September 2010 assault of his girlfriend at the time, Josie Harris. Mayweather said last week that the NFL should have stuck to the original two-game suspension of Rice, even after the video was released. He said “there’s a lot worse that goes on in other households.” When asked about his own domestic issues, he nonchalantly said there was no videos or photos of an assaulted woman at the hands of him. He never said he didn’t do it, but rather nobody ever saw him do it. Other domestic abusers will see this, coming from a guy like Mayweather and think if he can get away with it due to no photos or videos, then they can to.
So why are people still going to shell out money for his fights? If people want to see Rice without a job in the NFL, why not Floyd? This is where it gets hard for me in this question. I am a huge fan of Floyd Mayweather inside of a boxing ring. Watching him is magical and something we likely won’t see for some time. I like how he is always confident and flashy before his fights. He says he’s going out and winning, then backs it up. That’s where the line is drawn for me, as I don’t like the fact he has hit a woman before and don’t like how he arrogantly brushed off any wrong doing on his part. I watch a fight to be entertained and watching Mayweather is very entertaining.
As if the black cloud surrounding the NFL wasn’t big enough following everything that happened with Ray Rice, it did get bigger. Last Friday the Minnesota Vikings deactivated star running back Adrian Peterson for the game against the New England Patriots after he was indicted by a Montgomery County, Texas court on a felony charge of reckless or negligent injury to a child. Peterson gave his 4-year-old son a whooping with a wooden switch, which left the child with numerous bruises. So the Vikings made the right choice in deactivating Peterson, but then were going back and forth with what to do next. On Monday, the Vikings said Peterson would be activated and would play this Sunday against the New Orleans Saints. This drew heavy scrutiny and criticism from many around the league, especially big money sponsors. The Vikings were under a lot of pressure and then decided to place Peterson on the NFL’s exempt list, which is basically a fancy way of saying paid suspension. Peterson will not be allowed with the team until his legal issues are resolved, but he will still get paid his full salary.
Peterson played in the Vikings first game this year and that could be the only one he plays in this season and possibly the last one he plays in a Minnesota Vikings uniform. Peterson’s first scheduled court date isn’t until October 8 and that could even be pushed back. Peterson says he is always trying to teach his children right from wrong, but he went too far with this incident. What Adrian Peterson did is child abuse and that shouldn’t be tolerated. Its one thing to discipline your children, but it’s another thing when the child is bruised badly. Peterson isn’t the only one of the NFL’s exempt list as the Panthers have put Hardy on that list as well, after seeing the Vikings did that with AP.
This could possibly be the worst week in NFL history.
If you are reading this I thank you and appreciate you. For more sports talk, follow me on Twitter @KingEdward15. The King’s Court is now closed.