Fire Goodell #3: Jarran Reed Hypocrisy

Jarran Reed

The NFL has an unparalleled ability to ruin their own credibility, and that trait shined through yet again on Monday afternoon. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport broke the news that Seattle Seahawks defensive lineman Jarran Reed will miss the first six games of the season due to a domestic abuse incident back in early 2017. Reed didn’t face charges for this incident, but the NFL clearly felt he violated the personal conduct policy. This is all fine and dandy except for the fact that, less than a week ago, Roger Goodell didn’t issue any punishment to Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill.

Fire Goodell #2: The Jimmy Smith Suspension

Fire Goodell #3: The Hypocrisy of the Jarran Reed Suspension

What Happened

According to the NFL, Reed violated the NFL Personal Conduct Policy, specifically with regards to domestic violence. The exact details are not available to the public, so let’s piece together what we do know. On April 27th, 2017, Bellevue Police responded to a call which accused Jarran Reed of assault. At the time of the incident, Bellevue Police confirmed that they had a domestic violence case open against Reed.

However, the police never filed charges, and Reed was never arrested. Despite this, the NFL felt as though Reed’s actions crossed a line and deserved punishment. The league issued the six-game suspension and upheld it after Reed appealed the initial ruling.

In a vacuum, the league did nothing wrong on this one. The NFL definitively won the right to issue suspensions as they see fit during the DeflateGate fiasco, so Reed doesn’t need to be convicted to serve a suspension. We as a society do not know what happened that night, so Reed could very well be guilty. Ray Rice and Greg Hardy are living examples that sometimes the law fails to apprehend an abuser. Domestic violence shouldn’t go unpunished, so this suspension isn’t necessarily a strike against Goodell on its own.

Why This Suspension is Bad

Rules are supposed to be followed, and there’s supposed to be some type of consistency behind this decision making. Unfortunately, that guidance simply isn’t present in the NFL, and it hasn’t been for quite some time. Less than one week after handing out Reed’s suspension, the NFL decided to let Tyreek Hill go without a suspension. As I’m sure you all know, Hill spent his off-season at the center of a child abuse investigation in which a member of the DA said he believed “a crime was committed.”

Roger Goodell would tell you that he didn’t suspend Hill because the league could not conclusively determine who abused the child. Crystal Espinal, Hill’s fiancé, recorded a tape of the two getting into an argument. While the 11-minute tape creates the possibility that Hill didn’t abuse the child, it still paints him in a bad light. At one point in the recording, Espinal mentions that Child Services said Hill went too far in disciplining the child, and Hill acknowledges that the interaction occurred. However, the truly damning part of the tape was when Espinal said that their child is afraid of Hill and Hill responded by saying “you need to be afraid of me too, bitch.”

This alone constitutes verbal abuse, especially for a player of Hill’s background. Hill clearly states that Espinal should live in fear of what he could do to her, and the “too” implies that the child should share that fear. Considering Hill pled guilty to strangling Espinal back in 2014, the NFL should have taken this as a very real and credible threat.

Roger Goodell Proves He’s a Fraud With Jarran Reed Suspension

Nonetheless, Roger Goodell showed his true colors by allowing Hill to play a full 16-game season. Hill is one of the NFL’s biggest stars and having him on the field brings in more ratings and money. Roger Goodell doesn’t actually care about abuse victims, integrity, or anything that would imply he’s a man of character. All that matters to him is the bottom line. Defensive linemen don’t bring in ratings, so they have to pay for their actions. The NFL simply cannot survive with a man this heartless running the show, and the owners need to do what should have been done a long time ago and fire Goodell.

Fire Goodell #2: The Jimmy Smith Suspension

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