NY Giants Kicker Josh Brown Suspended for One Game; Signed a $4 Million Contract This Offseason
There seems to be a re-occurring saga for the start of every NFL season: a player is accused of domestic violence. This season, it stars NY Giants kicker Josh Brown.
Brown received a one-game suspension from the NFL for violating the league’s personal conduct policy. He will miss t
he season opener against the Dallas Cowboys on September 11.
“While I do not agree with the suspension, I will accept it. I have exhausted the appeals process and have no other options along those lines,” Brown said in a statement released by the Giants.
Brown is accused of more than 20 instances of domestic violence by his ex wife, starting from the time she became pregnant with their daughter in 2009, according to an incident report obtained by the New York Daily News.
He was arrested in May 2015 after Molly Brown, his then-wife, called the police on consecutive days to report domestic violence. He was ultimately arrested for fourth-degree assault, according to the report.
In April 2016, Brown signed a two-year, $4 million deal with the Giants. He will not be paid for the game he will miss.
As it stands now, this situation is bad. If the past is any indication of the future, it will get worse.
The Evident Bad
The Giants will start the 2016 season in Dallas–where they have lost two of the last three season openers–without their starting kicker. Brown had a strong 2015 season, finishing tied for 5th in most field goals made, going 30 for 32. His longest made was 53 yards. His leg will surely be missed in a game the Giants need all the help they can get.
Back-up kicker Tom Obarski missed a 27-yard field goal, a chip shot for any professional kicker, in the Giants preseason game against the Buffalo Bills. They eventually lost 21-0. It was the first time since 2001 that the Giants were shut out in a preseason game. Obarski was waived on Monday.
This week, the Giants tried out two veteran kickers and settled on 26-year-old Randy Bullock. In 2015, the Houston Texans released Bullock after he missed two extra point attempts and a field goal attempt in the Texans’ first three games. He finished the season with the New York Jets, where he made 14 of 17 field goals, a long of 48 yards.
Bullock may prove to be an important signing if trouble continues for Brown.
The Possible Worse
The first stipulation of the league’s conduct policy states that a player may face discipline for actions such as: “Criminal offense including, but not limited to, those involving: the use or threat of violence; domestic violence and other forms of partner abuse…”
It’s the first one! Not surprising the league put it at the top, after the recent blunders with this issue. But one game for possibly more than 20 counts of domestic violence hardly seems justifiable.
We are innocent until proven guilty in this country, however, and these are just accusations; all charges on Brown were quickly dropped.
But would an innocent person accept a punishment he doesn’t agree with for a crime he says he is innocent of? Why should he, if innocent, miss a game, miss a payment, and have his reputation slandered?
The implications point to two possibilities. One is that the NFL is such a nuisance to deal with when it comes to violating their policy that simply accepting their ambiguous punishments is the easiest way to move forward. The other is that Brown is guilty and he, the NFL, and the Giants want to sweep this under the rug immediately.
The Inevitable Future
The NFL seems inexplicably inept at uncovering the full story before coming to a decision regarding conduct violations. How is it, with all the NFL’s power and money, that videotapes of, phone calls about, and testimonies from the victims being abused are somehow missed during NFL-run investigations?
Questions should be asked and answers should be demanded. The NFL seems to have a problem and taking it lightly will help no one.
These situations seem to get much worse as time goes on. Already the story has gone from a one-game suspension for a violation, to a violation of domestic abuse, to Brown being accused of over 20 counts of domestic violence. And it’s only been a few days!
The Giants are an organization with a no-nonsense reputation. They should be given the benefit of the doubt that they did their due diligence before signing an alleged domestic abuser to a multi-year, multi-million dollar contract.
But where there is smoke, there tends to be fire. Brown, the Giants, and the NFL have a long road ahead of them. And if these allegations prove true, not only should the league be held accountable for (again) serving a lax punishment, but the Giants’ ownership should be too.
(NY Giants Kicker Josh Brown)(NY Giants Kicker Josh Brown)