Football Ethics or Football Ethics?

WILLIAM A. Gralnick

This is the case of DeShawn Watson. It is a Miami Dolphins issue. Or is it an NFL issue? Or is it a United States of America issue? For the moment, it is a non-issue, but if you put your ear close to the sports page you’ll still hear the whispering. You should listen in.

Wilson Football

Now, it is possible you don’t know who DeShawn Watson is. He is/was the sensationally gifted quarterback of the Houston Texans who is not playing this season. Why? Good question, since he is not injured. DeShawn Watson has another gift. It is getting into legal trouble with women.

This man has racked up against him 22 sexual assault related claims. There may be 10 criminals charges as well. He wants to be traded but since none of these cases have been settled, there aren’t many takers, but three. One is the New England Patriots who have dealt with some scandals of their own so guess there attitude is, “What the heck!” “He’s close to a budding Tom Brady as we’re going to find.”

Another is the Carolina Panthers who seem to be trying to stay under the radar. Finally, is my miserable Miami Dolphins. There are miserable because of the perfect storm: dumb management and mediocre (with an exception here and there) players.

Lady Justice Against Jail Background
Isn’t this what it should be all about?

With the tribulations of year three, the “everyone thought he would be a superstar” Tugovailoa (Tua to everyone, thank you), the Dolphins have been toying all season with the thought of buying him up. That doesn’t do much for the inside of young Tua’s head. You know how they say that without bad luck you’d have no luck at all? Well two weeks ago the Dolphins finally won a game after six straight losses. Tua? He was out with a fractured finger on his throwing hand. The week before the trading deadline came and went so the issue is no longer in the headlines (’till the end of the season). But it should be. Why? Because it is less a football issue than an ethics and common sense one.

Let’s begin the ethics class. What do you think of the character of a man who signs a 156 million dollar guaranteed extension to his contract–and then asks to be traded. Gratitude? Loyalty? These cards don’t seem to be in his deck. What stunt is he going to pull on the next team? One would think that before you signed such a contract you’d have thought through if you were happy where you were. No? One could also presume that $156 mil could soothe a few sore feelings about whatever.

Money In The Bag
Or is this what it is all about?

Then we come to the “where there’s smoke, there’s fire” part of this. Twenty-two sexual complaints? Ten possibly criminal ones? Should I assume all those women are liars? Are grifters? Are part of a conspiracy? You know what they say about “assume.” Yet, let me charge ahead.

I’m reminded of the argument between Abraham and G-d over one of several times G-d got fed up over wickedness, was going to wipe everyone out, and start all over again. Abraham began to do the numbers. If there were 100 good people, would you wipe out everyone? How about 50? Maybe ten. If G-d muses, he mused a bit and said, “Don’t be silly. Of course not.” Finally we get down to one and we see that the first Honest Abe won.

Vneice - Abraham And Isaac In Church San Francesco Della Vigna

This leads us to assume (there’s that word again) that the teams involved figure that not one of those women is telling the truth and even if one is, or ten are, or all are then “devil take the hind most.” They are willing to poke these women, and all women, in the eye and say, “Winning! That’s what matters.”

Then we have the all-mighty National Football League which has said loud and clear, “leave us out of this.” We’re not doing in independent investigation, we’re not suspending him, and we’re certainly not banning him. I guess that would take 44 not 22 complaints. Oh well.

Vector Silhouette Of American Football Players On White Background.
The Guy In the middle is asking the right question.

Let’s go back to the $156 million. There’s certainly enough in that pot to print a whole lot of non-disclosure agreements and then secretly negotiate the end to each and every suit. Now we have a cleansed-of-evil super star ready to be snatched up. The League? Well, no suits, no foul. If Watson is convicted of something, then they’ll take a look.

My humble opinion is that women need to start yelling now, “I’m sick and tired and won’t take it anymore!” I also humbly offer that with that number of complaints, Watson should not be allowed to play until they are resolved. If he is convicted, any team that takes him “to rehabilitate him” is lying.

And yes, I think that Green Bay Superman Aaron Rogers, who makes idiotic insurance commercials, should be punished for lying to the fans across this land of ours. Rumor has it that he and the Packers are being fined, but that’s a secret. I think he should be suspended, not because he didn’t get vaccinated, but because his concern was “image,” to paint the prettiest picture of himself as possible.

An excuse to take Watson? I say, “Bushwah!”


Wearing his “More matters than winning” T-shirt, Bill leaves it to you to chew on this. Is the insane amount of money being played to professional ball players mean that their only obligation is to win? Look at your kids, your nieces, nephews, and grandchildren before you answer. And remenber, it would make Bill’s arthritic fingers feel oh so much better if you bought a copy of, “George Washington Didn’t Sleep Here.” It’ll make you feel good, maybe not as much as $156 million, but even a little feel good is better than none.

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