Jun 26, 2013; North Attleborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots former tight end Aaron Hernandez (left) stands with his attorney Michael Fee as he is arraigned in Attleboro District Court. Hernandez is charged with first degree murder in the death of Odin Lloyd. Mandatory Credit: The Sun Chronicle/Pool Photo via USA TODAY Sports
Aaron Hernandez has become quite the enigma for those Sainted Patriots to deal with hasn’t he? For all of the time we have been spent gaining our reputation as “the circus”, you have this. Isn’t it fun to close your eyes, and imagine the hoodie getting angrier and angrier? Smoking coming out of the man’s ears? I don’t know about you, but for me, the image is like milk, it does a body good.
But, Hernandez is far from the only problem this league has ever seen. Pacman Jones comes to mind. Plaxico Burress is another prime example of a player that doesn’t use his head. You have guys with the significant prison time of Mike Vick, to the guys that have caused trouble on a smaller scale, such as Braylon Edwards and his driving. Then we have the report about Mark’s partying,
So, this is a constant problem. The question is, what can be done? The Rookie Symposium just ended, and the league does a good job at teaching the players what needs to be done. They get some great insights from great NFL professionals, but the problems still persist. They warn about the potential, but just like the game itself, you cannot understand what needs to be done with how you behave, until you are in the situation.
The key, is keeping a staff that does more than that. You would hate to thing that this is necessary, but in this day and age. Bring on a staff that is there for the sole purpose of watching behavior. The guy could be “protecting the team’s investment”, if you need a formal job description, but his role is to intervene as someone goes around harassing or just generally bringing your player into bad behavior. The staff acts as a liaison, protecting both the team and the player.
It seems that this is something you shouldn’t need, I know that. Players should understand the gift they have been given with a shot in the NFL, but often times, they don’t. This group of staff that I propose would be a small expense, but the value would be huge.
That’s how you solve the problem, IMO