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Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Is the NFL Going Too Easy on Owner Jim Irsay?

In America, a man is considered innocent until proven guilty. The National Football League, however, is not quite as diplomatic as the United States judicial system attempts to be. Jim Irsay, owner of the Indianapolis Colts, is yet to face his day in court. Irsay is facing conviction for misdemeanour counts of operating a vehicle while intoxicated, but he is still also facing punishment from the NFL.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell is yet to act upon the actions of Irsay, and the waiting game seems to be irritating players around the league. Goodell has reacted swiftly in several cases against players, but may be waiting until Irsay’s court decision comes down, before making his judgement on the owner. Also, Goodell could be in a tough spot, due to the fact that he is technically an employee of Irsay and other owners in the league.

Regards of how Irsay’s OWI situation plays out, the actions of the owner were obviously a black eye for his team and the NFL. Even though his charges were reduced to only misdemeanours, he was also driving around with a lot of medication and a lot of money. There have also been reports following in the wake of Irsay’s arrest, involving the drug-induced death of a female who resided in a house Irsay had paid for. Irsay was also reported to be around another female acquaintance and her young children, directly before his inebriated arrest. Irsay quickly checked himself into rehab, returning right before the 2014 NFL Draft.

Recently, when WR – LaVon Brazill was suspended by the NFL for a third substance abuse violation, the Colts quickly released the player. Several teams have also acted swiftly in similar situations, choosing to take actions into their own hands, rather than wait for Goodell to bring the hammer down. Perhaps the Colts were trying to avoid further scrutiny, or to divert the spotlight shortly away from their owner. Either way, as time keeps ticking, the NFL waits and wonders.

 

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