02/15/16 by Matthew S. Vandriak
On the heels of the Super Bowl this is not the kind of news the NFL wanted to hear. LeSean McCoy of the Buffalo Bills caught on video in the middle of a night club brawl with off duty Philadelphia police officers. But this wasn't just a bar fight, McCoy and his friends are seen on video assaulting the two officers, both of whom had to be hospitalized. Just when it seemed like the high profile off the field incidents in the NFL had come to a halt, ugliness like this has reared its head again.
No charges have been filed yet, but warrants for the arrest of McCoy and the others in his party that were involved in the incident are expected to come this week. He most likely will be charged with aggravated assault. But if you've seen the video or read the reports of the incident, this is much more serious than aggravated assault. McCoy and his friends beat down these two officers allegedly due to an argument over a bottle of champagne. The officers were punched, kicked, and stomped while on the ground. One of the officers sustained facial fractures, the other reportedly suffered a fractured skull. That's pretty serious stuff.
So how does the NFL deal with this? In all of the high profile cases recently, the NFL's discipline was a joke. The players union had any discipline the NFL dished out reduced. Anything that's gone to arbitration has been ruled in favor of the players union. So what is the NFL going to do this time if charges are field against McCoy and he's either found guilty or more than likely, reaches a plea deal?
What comes out of this is going to be key in regards to how the NFL is viewed in regards to how it handles disciplining players who get in trouble. With changes that were made in regards to the player conduct policy, McCoy could be looking at a 6 game suspension. But he's also a player who has no prior suspensions or off field arrests. So any discipline dished out by the NFL would most likely be challenged by McCoy and the players union. And if recent history means anything, the penalty dished out would be reduced.
What if the Buffalo Bills release McCoy pending on the outcome of all of this? Unlike Ray Rice, who has yet to find work in the NFL since he was released by the Baltimore Ravens, McCoy is still an effective player who could benefit another NFL team. Would he be signed by someone else? Most likely he would because the talent level is still there.
You'd like to believe that if McCoy is charged and found guilty that he'll get the punishment he deserves and that the NFL will finally look like it's taking control in regards to player discipline. If McCoy is charged and found guilty the NFL needs to have any disciplinary action it takes to hold up this time. Otherwise the image of the NFL being full of thugs and criminals that has been shed recently, will be back in the public eye and will be back as a black eye on the NFL's face again.
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