22

February

Cory’s Corner: It’s time for Roger Goodell to get tough

Since Sept. 2013, there have been 17 NFL arrests, and four in 2014 already.

Since Sept. 2013, there have been 17 NFL arrests, and four in 2014 already.

Apparently Roger Goodell is going have shine up his sheriff’s badge.

Off the field, the NFL is getting out-of-control as players with more money than ever before, exert their ego and entitlement on others.

In 2014, which is less then two months old mind you, there have already been four arrests. Add in the Dolphins’ locker room environment, and the recent Ray Rice altercation with his fiancé and Goodell has his hands full.

But that’s not even the worse of it. Former NFL player Darren Sharper was charged with seven rape and drug counts involving four women.

Goodell’s fairytale has suddenly drifted off the tracks. You have players that are getting rich in an instant, oftentimes more money than they’ve ever dreamed of, and then watching as these same athletes commit blatant crimes.

Goodell can talk about more rookie town hall meetings where Herm Edwards gets in front of an overhead projector and talks about how to fill your life off-the-field positively. He can talk about workshops to help curb substance abuse, which are usually the jumping off point to physical violence.

But the time for talk is over. Goodell now needs to get tough and make those players understand how important playing for that NFL shield is. And the quickest way for Goodell to get it in their heads is in through their bank account.

The things that Richie Incognito did would get entire human resources staffs fired. If Incognito did those kinds of things in the real world, he would be at odds to find a job let alone another professional football one.

Rice still hasn’t been charged but at no point is it OK for a man to hit a woman. Period. The video of him dragging out his fiancé because he knocked her out is not only shocking but it’s also very sad. He never thought for an instant what the ramifications of hitting a woman might lead to. At the very least he needs to be suspended, some are saying he should be kicked out of the NFL. Even if his fiancé elects not to press charges, Rice should still be punished by Goodell.

9

November

Cory’s Corner: Goodell needs to make an example of Incognito

Miami Dolphins appeared in this PSA before games that ran on the scoreboard reminding fans to be civilized.

Miami Dolphins offensive lineman Richie Incognito appeared in this PSA that ran on the Sun Life Stadium scoreboard before games reminding fans to be civilized. He was also on the team’s leadership council.

First it was Michael Vick. Then along came Riley Cooper. Now we have Richie Incognito.

I know Roger Goodell has been labeled as a sheriff in the wild, wild west to some for his way of doling out punishments.

But apparently, he needs to go in a few notches on his law belt.

When the Michael Vick dog fighting case came about in 2007, it was arguably one of the most abhorrent things a player has ever done off the field. He served 21 months in jail for his role in a five-year dog fighting ring. Vick was able to get a starting job back but his public persona has been severly dented.

Then along came Riley Cooper. The loudmouth Eagles receiver who threw N-bombs at a Kenny Chesney concert was rightly vilified for putting the country back 50-60 years. Players  from around the league, which is predominantly African American, still haven’t been able to forgive a guy that spouted off and despite apologizing until he was blue in the face, Cooper could potentially still harbor those feelings deep inside.

And now we’ve got Incognito. Labeling him as a bully is a disservice to bullies. He is a calculated emotional killer that preys on the weak. Judging from the texts and voicemails where he called Jonathan Martin racial epithets and even mentioned that he would kill him, Incognito is worse than the first two guys. I mean, Incognito forced Martin to chip in $15,000 to finance a trip to Las Vegas – a trip that Martin wasn’t even attending. So, in addition to making your fellow offensive lineman’s life a living hell thanks to a verbal assault, you’ve entered into the world of extortion.

The problem is, since the NFL is a macho sport based upon brute strength, most people just shrug their shoulders when they see this type of thing. Many Dolphins players really didn’t notice anything because the meat and potatoes of what was going on they didn’t see or hear. Incognito called out Martin in the locker room but it wasn’t anything that people wouldn’t consider out of the norm for locker room chatter.