The shelf life of a professional athlete will never be compared to that of a school teacher, attorney, sales representative or nearly any other common career.
It’s even shorter for those like Arizona Cardinals linebacker Daryl Washington who was suspended late last week for the entire 2014 season for failing numerous drug tests.
One NFL insider believes Commissioner Roger Goodell’s punishment of Washington was taken too far.
“You can throw guys out of the league for domestic abuse as far as I’m concerned,” NFL on CBS and cbssports.com insider Jason La Canfora told Sports360AZ.com’s Brad Cesmat in a recent phone interview. “But…a three-year average lifespan of your career and we could have one of the best offensive players and best young defensive players in the league not playing for a year because of pot. I don’t get it. I don’t know who wins there.”
La Canfora was referencing Cleveland Browns standout wide receiver Josh Gordon who could also face a year-long suspension after being pulled over for speeding and a passenger in his vehicle was cited for possession of marijuana. He missed two games last season due to a drug suspension and still led the league in receiving yards.
Gordon and the Browns have yet to hear from the league but rest assured, they will.
Some, like La Canfora believe “the big, bad NFL” is simply “thumping their chest” as whistle-blowers more to prove a point to other pro sports as to how they handle their business. He believes the league doesn’t always have their players best intentions in mind when handling these situations.
“Let’s face it, this isn’t about treatment,” he told Cesmat. “To me this is the ultimate victimless crime other than when it costs you a year of your career and a million bucks than obviously you’re a victim of your own mistakes.”
Cards head coach Bruce Arians said earlier this week he and the entire organization will no longer comment on the Washington situation.
In last 12 games of ’13, Dansby, Washington were on the field at same time 98.6% of def snaps Dansby missed 4 plays. Wash, 7 in 12 games.
— Kent Somers (@kentsomers) June 3, 2014
The team reached a free-agent deal with former Detroit Lion and Dallas Cowboy Ernie Sims who they hope will help fill the void left behind by Washington and Karlos Dansby who signed with the Browns this spring.