Should the NFL Have an Off-Season?
~ Amy Lignor
It is starting to become crystal clear, for every fan, coach, and player who must hang their head while they desperately try to hang on to their job, that off-season for the NFL may be a sports ‘wrong’.
Yes, in every single spot across the land there are players who get into trouble. DUI’s, drugs, moronic deeds – even the worst of them all, being accused of actual murder. Fans get sickened and truly wish they could push all this aside when their favorite team marches out on the field in September and begins again.
The NFL is something this country is proud of, it took over as America’s game quite a long time ago. There were dynasties that went beyond imagination. Teams that won Super Bowl after Super Bowl with the best players ever created – players who went directly into the Hall of Fame, because there was nowhere else they belonged. And do not get this article mistaken, there are icons in the NFL that will never be forgotten, and there are future icons standing here in 2014 just waiting to join the Hall of Famers one day after having the most magnificent careers possible.
What hurts – the fans, guys and gals, because we are the ones who want to cheer, root, and have our kids wearing jerseys of their absolute favorites because they are star struck by the abilities and talents of these men on the gridiron – is when a future Hall of Famer, or a future player everyone is falling in love with because of their ‘Captain America-type’ abilities, end up making a serious mistake that will, from then on, be the first thing said about them on a news show, even if the second thing happens to be ‘they were entered into the Hall of Fame.” That is depressing.
Every 49ers fan is thinking about Montana, Young, and Rice – the dynasty that made the Niners the best of the best and had people looking up to them for decades. They are also thinking about Coach Harbaugh who is so supportive of his team and shouts out good things about them all year long, and what he must be looking like right now with the latest information. The Seattle Seahawks have just won their very first Super Bowl. They should be (and were) jumping up and down with absolute glee. Now, they have a headline to deal with that takes the shine off the trophy, and it should not! At least, not for the players who are wanting more than anything to keep all the shine as they win back-to-back Super Bowls and show everyone in the NFL that it was not some stroke of luck that they whipped the icon, Peyton Manning.
Colin Kaepernick is a very young QB, but he came out of the gate as if he was nothing short of Superman. The very first time around, he brought the Niners to the Super Bowl. The second time, he brought them to Seattle who, on a complete and utter need to win, made sure the Niners did not stand in front of Manning and try for the Lombardi trophy again. Kap is young, but he’s one of the best on the field right now. The ‘experts’ are already calling for the Niners to enjoy the ‘third time is a charm’ statement when it comes to having a great season and finally coming home with the trophy in 2015.
Unfortunately, the headlines are now changed. Kap and two other NFL players are being investigated by police in Florida for an‘incident’ that happened April 1st. Yes, this is an investigation only, with no arrests having been made and no charges being filed against anyone. But as we all know, gossip stays with you for the rest of time. It can also end a career before it has begun if fans turn against you.
The report filed is all about a woman who claims to have been, for lack of a better word, partying with Kap, 49ers wide receiver, Quinton Patton, and Seattle Seahawks receiver, Ricardo Lockette at the Viceroy located in downtown Miami. The woman spoke with the police saying the four of them were basically drinking and smoking marijuana in Lockette’s apartment where she eventually ended up in a bedroom with the QB. Now, the woman stated they did not have relations and that Kap left the room, but they were in an undressed state at some point. Patton and Lockette supposedly opened the door later that evening and “peeked” into the room but shut it when she told them to leave. And that is where her memory becomes unclear.
Alleged sexual assault is what is being cited in the investigation. The 49ers GM, Trent Baalke, state they are in the “process of gathering the pertinent facts.” And the Seahawks released a statement, saying their team was also aware of the situation and “is monitoring it closely and will not have any further comment at this time.”
No, no one knows what happened as of now. There is no significant charge being made and, again, no arrests. The report is hazy and there will be many things to look at as the months go by.
But a ‘charge’ that needs to be filed comes from the fans: Admiration and respect goes along with this game. Loyalty is given to players who do understand they are icons and heroes in everyone’s eyes – especially children who look up to them. You are the one who wanted this life; you are the one who wanted to be on top in the NFL – so act like it! Or else, National Football League, take away the off-season. I am sure that the football players can be put to work building houses for people who have nothing. Perhaps that will keep egos in check, drugs out of systems, and brains understanding the fact that Sports ‘wrongs’ can bury any sports ‘rights’ you do.