As if the Detroit Lions needed any more fodder for the sports media cannons, another player finds himself in legal hot water, while the team's front office scrambles to quell the whisperings.
As reported on June 26, Lions cornerback Aaron Berry instigated the sixth legal incident, during this offseason, as he was arrested over the previous weekend on suspicion of driving while intoxicated, causing damage to a parked, unattended vehicle, failure to stop and provide information for law enforcement officials. Berry was, according to witness reports, arrested at 4:45 a.m. on Saturday morning, after he exited his vehicle and walked away from the scene of the accident.
In a statement released on Tuesday, the Lions organization said they were "extremely disappointed in the reports involving Aaron Berry and the incident in Pennsylvania this past weekend. This is not the standard of behavior we expect from any member of our organization."
While sports talk shows were busily blasting the Lions over their apparent penchant for becoming the next Oakland Raiders., such as the widely loved, and despised, Jim Rome, fans were left pondering the reaction of upper management. Obviously, this was a similarly-worded statement to those released previously. The company line, while the best move for the organization at this time, clearly is beginning to show signs of "bark with no bite."
Detroit is in the precarious position of needing to either take a firm hand and control the situation, or let sleeping dogs lie and hope it sorts itself out. Although management believes the team is not undisciplined, as a whole, they are quickly spiraling downward. The time has come for Detroit to make the difficult decision cut ties with each of these players.
Players like Berry, Mikel Leshoure, Johnny Culbreath and Nick Fairly need to understand that, by leaving college and entering the professional ranks of the sport, the act of growing up and becoming men is a requirement. None of them have been major contributors - some by virtue of injuries; some by youth, inexperience and depth chart. Regardless, the Lions cannot continue to give second, fifth or ninth chances for egregious lapses in judgment. If they wish to continue building a successful, respected team, this type of disregard for personal and professional dignity.
The standard should be, "if you are going to garner headlines for anything other than on-field performance, you're off the roster." Harsh as it may be, the building severity warrants a drastic response.
The author, D. Benjamin Satkowiak, is a successful entrepreneur and published, freelance author, who has tailored works on various sports, health and fitness topics. He currently serves as a Yahoo! Contributor Network "Featured Contributor" and writes on the Detroit Tigers, Detroit Lions, Great Lakes Loons and Notre Dame football.
- Sports & Recreation
- Detroit Lions
- Aaron Berry