The Washington Times-Herald

Community News Network

December 10, 2012

NFL violent deaths show league must improve focus on education

(Continued)

DALLAS —

"There should be an automatic two-game suspension on the first DUI," said CBS Sports analyst Bill Cowher, who guided the Steelers to victory in the Super Bowl after the 2005 season. "That's the only way to get the message through. The only hammer you have is playing time. Fines won't get it done."

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell will probably face pressure to investigate whether collisions that cause concussions were a factor in Belcher's actions, Burton and Rosner said.

"I don't know if there's a correlation, but that may be the perception and the NFL should be seen to be examining the possibility," Burton said.

The tragedies of the past week are unlikely to affect the league's business over the long term, said Steve Rosner, co- founder and a partner in East Rutherford, N.J.-based 16W Marketing.

"It's a black eye on the individuals rather than the league," Rosner, whose clients include baseball's Cal Ripken Jr., basketball's Hakeem Olajuwon and football's Howie Long, each retired and a member of his sport's Hall of Fame, said in a telephone interview. "The NFL is on a very high pedestal and it would take a lot to knock it down."

The sport is almost immune to negative publicity, Stephen McDaniel, who teaches sports and entertainment marketing at the University of Maryland, said in an email.

Television ratings and league revenue are at record levels even after a lockout and scandals involving some its highest- profile players in recent years.

Quarterback Michael Vick's conviction for dog-fighting; wide receiver Plaxico Burress's incarceration on a weapons charge; Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger's four-game suspension after being accused but not charged with assaulting two women; a 162-day player lockout, criticism over the use of replacement referees; or a bounty scandal involving the New Orleans Saints in which the NFL said players received money for hits that injured opponents.

Even increased penalties won't be enough to eradicate the risk of further incidents like the two in the past week, Rosner said.

"The NFL is being as aggressive as it can to police their players," Rosner said. "But sometimes individuals do things that can't be legislated for, no matter how scrupulous the league is."

Text Only
Community News Network
  • Ice bucket challenge trending up

    Internet trends are a dime a dozen these days. Everything from Tebowing to planking to the cinnamon challenge can cause a wave of social media activity that can last for weeks before fizzling out.

    August 19, 2014

  • Africa goes medieval in its fight against Ebola

    As the Ebola epidemic claims new victims at an ever-increasing rate, African governments in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia have instituted a "cordon sanitaire," deploying troops to forcibly isolate the inhabitants in an area containing most of the cases.

    August 18, 2014

  • Democrat? Republican? There's an app for that

    If you're a Republican, you might want to think twice before buying Lipton Iced Tea, and forget about Starbucks coffee. If you're a Democrat, put down that Reese's Peanut Butter Cup, and throw away the cylinder of Quaker Oats in your pantry.

    August 18, 2014

  • Five myths about presidential vacations

    In the nuclear age, presidents may have only minutes to make a decision that could affect the entire world. They don't so much leave the White House as they take a miniature version of it with them wherever they go.

    August 15, 2014

  • Can 6 seconds launch a career? A generation of Vine stars sure hopes so.

    A year ago, Shawn Mendes filmed himself singing a tentative acoustic cover of the Justin Bieber song "As Long as You Love Me" and put the results on Vine. He wasn't expecting much response. "I didn't really want anything to happen; I just kind of wanted to see what people would think," says Mendes, 16. "I posted that first Vine and woke up the next morning with 10,000 followers. That was pretty cool."

    August 14, 2014

  • Freshman.jpg 8 crucial tips for college freshmen

    With school starting back up around the country, no one has a bigger deer-in-the-headlights look than college freshmen.

    August 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • A night in Ferguson

    For the past week in Ferguson, reporters have been using the McDonald's a few blocks from the scene of Michael Brown's shooting as a staging area. Demonstrations have blown up each night nearby.

    August 14, 2014

  • unrest.jpg Why the Ferguson police-shooting riots had little to do with Ferguson

    Riots and vandalism broke out in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson. An 18-year-old black man named Michael Brown was fatally shot by police there. Brown was unarmed. It's still unclear why tensions boiled over.

    August 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • Drug dealers going corporate

    A top federal official on Tuesday said that 105 banks and credit unions are doing business with legal marijuana sellers, suggesting that federal rules giving financial institutions the go-ahead to provide services to dealers are starting to work.

    August 13, 2014

  • Robin_Williams.jpg Williams among many who cracked jokes while fighting depression

    Robin Williams isn't the only comedian who has struggled with a disease suffered by an estimated 350 million people worldwide. Williams, a comedian known for his manic energy, committed suicide Aug. 11 at age 63.

    August 13, 2014 1 Photo