May 8, 2014; New York, NY, USA; A general view of a helmet and NFL shield logo before the start of the 2014 NFL Draft at Radio City Music Hall. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports
There has been so much Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson talk this week, with both of them in trouble with the law and the NFL. We all know their stories by now. Rice with his domestic violence and Peterson with his alleged assault on his child. The New York Times yesterday published a piece on how many players for each NFL team have been arrested since January 2000. The Arizona Cardinals are tied for the fewest in the NFL.
Just 11 players have been arrested as a member of the Cardinals from the period of January 2000 until this month September 2014. The St. Louis Rams and the Houston Texans also have had just 11 players arrested. Keep in mind with the Texans, they didn’t start play until 2002, so their number is from 2002 until now.
The Minnesota Vikings lead the NFL in player arrests over that period with 44. The Cincinnati Bengals are next in line with 43. The majority of arrests have been for Driving Under Influence but the second most is assault and battery with domestic violence a very close third. So clearly, domestic violence is an issue the NFL has had the opportunity to deal with before and chose not to.
So what does this say about the Cards? I think it says a lot. To me it says they are a high character organization. I’ve always said, character before talent. Sure, that could be a contributing factor to the lack of success on the field but I will always prefer a high quality person over a high quality talent if the talent is too much baggage.
I believe with all of what has transpired in the NFL over the past week you will see teams act quicker and harsher when someone gets into trouble. With the technology available and guidelines in place now, I think you’ll also start to see these numbers drop. There will always be the outliers. It would be naive to say no one will get into trouble again. These are eye-opening numbers. Players will still get into trouble. They are human like you and I but with what’s on the line for them and what’s been reported this week, you’d have to think more players will think twice before acting.