Jim Irsay will have to wait a little longer to learn his punishment for a recent arrest, according to a recent report on Pro Football Talk. While NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has never been shy about banning players even before their charges have been formally brought to court, Goodell expressed cautious concern at Irsay’s situation in the PFT piece.
“There have been no charges,” Goodell said. “Until we have more information and more facts we will let it play out.”
While that’s certainly an admirable and constitutional stance on the issue, it’s pretty inconsistent with the way the NFL has handled infractions from its lower level employees, i.e. the players.
As the report notes, Ben Roethlisberger was never charged with a formal crime, but the allegations of rape that followed him were enough to warrant discipline from the league.
The same has been the case for other players who have escaped charges, but not sanctions from their employer.
We get it. The bosses make the rules and are thus held to different standards. Does that mean it has to be rubbed in our face?
Goodell shouldn’t be at fault for wanting to wait and see the exact status of a crime allegedly committed by one of his 32 bosses who are responsible for his mammoth salary.
You would be hesitant. I would be hesitant. That’s fine. It would just be nice to see Goodell show the same care when a player is in a similar situation.
Innocent until proven guilty. That’s how it works in this country, and that’s probably how it should work in the NFL.
Don’t be surprised if the union touts the handling of Irsay’s indiscretions next time a player is accused of something and subsequently disciplined by the Commish before charges are made.