NFL Has to Find a Way to Deal with Player DUI’sPosted by William on Jun 20, 2012 in Driving Under the Influence, News | 0 comments
This is not a new problem; however there has been a greater emphasis in the NFL in policing the behavior of players. There have been a number of high profile DUI’s by current NFL players in 2012. According to some sources, there have already been more DUI’s by NFL players in the first six months of 2012 than in all of 2011.
The NFL for its part has sought to address the problem by providing a low-cost ride service for NFL players. That is further supplemented by programs that individual teams may have in place. These facts have the NFL considering stronger punishments for DUI and DWI offenses. The issue may be further complicated by the new collective bargaining agreement between management and the NFL Players Association (NFLPA). There may be some pushback from NFLPA when it comes to suspensions, especially for first time offenders. The relationship between the two parties may be somewhat strained right now with the “Bounty-gate” suspensions and resulting lawsuit by the suspended players.
The fact the NFL and NFLPA still has not come to an agreement on Human Growth Hormone (HGH) testing, despite the claim the program would be in place during the 2011 season, does not bode well for a quick resolution. Professional athletes making mistakes is not new. However, the NFL has gone to great strides to try to protect their brand. With the new social media, incidents can quickly gain much more exposure.
Coaches, assistants, and team employees who are not part of the collective bargaining agreement or the NFLPA can face stiff penalties for DUI’s. In 2011, the President of the Detroit Lions was suspended 30 days and fined $100,000 for his DUI arrest.
On the issue of the player ride service, one league source stated the service “has been used…but obviously, as we’ve see, eight fewer times” that it needed to be (referring to the 8 arrests in 2012).