After one of the most violent and ugly moments in NFL history, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will meet with Myles Garrett to determine his fate.
Myles Garrett nearly maimed Mason Rudolph with Rudolph’s own helmet in prime time. The play was so brutal and ugly that many, including some on this site, thought it was time to ban Garrett for life. While football is a violent sport, it doesn’t need any extracurricular help. Neither player was right in the exchange. Both were grabbing at places they didn’t need to be grabbing but don’t kid yourself, Garrett was more wrong than Rudolph.
He absolutely deserved the season-long/indefinite suspension that he got. Despite what some fans may say, there is no place in sports for such barbarism. Not with all we know these days about head injuries and the ease at which football players develop long-term issues with their brains. Decorum, tact, and responsibility need to be upheld at all times when playing such violent sports. This is the same idea for MMA, boxing, wrestling, etc. Respect your opponent, play to win but don’t play to hurt.
Garrett broke that covenant. There is never an excuse, no matter what some keyboard tough guy may say, to ever assault someone with a deadly weapon. No word justifies it, only action in the defense of oneself or another. Garrett was not in harm’s way. Garrett messed up.
So who is Garrett? Is Garrett a violent human being with impulse control problems? Well, the bar on the Browns is pretty low these days but this is Garrett’s first real issue with the league. Sure, some players think he’s a bit dirty but when Ndamukong Suh plays this sport, it’s hard to argue they’re in the same class of characters. If Suh is dirty, then Garrett is diet-dirty.
That’s the thing though, isn’t it? Garrett’s reputation is defined by this moment. Not a series of moments. There’s not a string of allegations against him, and he’s not constantly in trouble. In fact, since the incident, he’s been quiet. Staying out of trouble. See how easy that is to not get in trouble?
Garrett hasn’t earned the reputation yet of being a bad man. He’s not Tyreke Hill. If Hill can keep playing and get a contract extension for “allegedly” being a bad guy, then maybe we can be ok with giving Garrett a second chance. Sometimes people do learn, sometimes they do grow. Sometimes they actually strive to change who they are in order to better fit in a family or in this case a team.
Goodell can’t seriously say that Garrett doesn’t deserve to be in the league next season considering the type of folks that Goodell has deemed worthy to come back. If Dante Stallworth can commit vehicular manslaughter while under the influence and be reinstated months later, then Goodell can give Garrett a second chance. Garrett deserves to prove to the world that he’s changed and that moment in time wasn’t him or his legacy. Just a rather unfortunate sentence in the book that is his life.
If he does it again, however, throw him in the same pit Ozzie Smith fell into.