Get your popcorn ready!
The NFL season is among us and it has been an interesting off-season for some of the teams, and the NFL has had some notable story lines going on in the past few months.
Let’s start with Cleveland.
Cleveland Browns wide receiver, Josh Gordon, has been suspended for the entire season because his drug test tested positive for marijuana. Gordon appealed the suspension, claiming it was from second-hand smoke. Since the positive drug test, he had tested clean for multiple other tests that were given to him.
Gordon’s appeal hearing lasted hours, forcing people to think that maybe, just maybe, Gordon was being truthful about not smoking. After the appeal, there was no decision right away. In fact, the verdict was not given until today, four months after the suspension was announced.
The verdict wasn’t changed and Gordon still remained suspended for the entire 2014 season. The wide receiver served a two-game suspension last season for a failed drug test. However, during the four-month span the suspension was appealed, Gordon got himself into more legal trouble on two other separate occasions.
NFL insider Adam Shefter said the Browns had been confused as to why it took the league so long to come up with an answer as to whether or not Gordon’s suspension would be upheld.
There was much speculation the league may lessen the number of games due to Baltimore Ravens running back, Ray Rice, only received a two-game suspension for domestic abuse on his then-fiancee.
NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell, told reporters he kept Rice’s suspension to a minimal two games because he’s a good guy who does a lot of charity and community work (which he does) and the fact that there was no action taken in the justice system also played a role in the suspension.
However, the reason the justice system did not take action was because Rice and his fiancee got married. Therefore, she didn’t have to testify and she chose not to. Rice apologized and admitted to making a mistake, but that doesn’t change the fact he knocked his wife unconscious and then proceeded to drag her body out of an elevator.
Nothing can be changed now, Gordon won’t partake in any club activity for 2014 and we’ll see Rice in Week 3.
Next up, my New England Patriots made an unexpected and surprising trade yesterday afternoon when they traded pro-bowl guard Logan Mankins to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for tight end Tim Wright as well as a fourth-round draft pick in 2015. He was with the Pats for nine seasons, being the third-longest tenured player.
A source told the Boston Globe that Wright is, “as close as a player to Aaron Hernandez as the Patriots could get.”
Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick has been known to make some surprising moves during the off-season. Some notable moves include releasing Lawyer Malloy before the 2003 season and in 2009, he traded Richard Seymour to Oakland just days before the season was slated to start. And how could any of New England forget the trade of Drew Bledsoe in 2002?
There’s no doubting that Makins was everything and more that Patriots could have asked for in a player. He missed just 14 games in his nine seasons, he played at left guard when teammate Nate Solder was out and he played a majority of the 2011 season with a partially torn ACL.
The last story is one that was covered by ESPN regarding St. Louis Rams Michael Sam. As we all know, Sam is the first openly gay NFL player. ESPN covered a story involving Sam, but not about his football skills.
The headline popped up and read, “How Michael Sam is fitting in with Rams teammates.” It really wasn’t much to think about because it’s normal to wonder how the newbie is doing with the veteran players. However, the story took a weird twist after that.
It was about Sam’s showering habits in the locker room, and how he supposedly was avoiding showering with certain teammates. I’m curious as to how this is news? And why it matters? Sam was drafted based on his football abilities, not his sexuality. The media wouldn’t be so wrapped up in him if he was not openly gay. The man is here to fulfill his dream as a professional football player. And that’s what he is going to do.
ESPN has since apologized for their portrayal of the story.
We’re just days away from Week 1, let’s make it a good season.