Steelers MMQB: NFL Offseason News
Dec 8, 2013; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice (27) reacts after being tackled against the Minnesota Vikings at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports
What We Learned This Week in the NFL Offseason:
- Ravens RB Ray Rice married woman he was indicted for assaulting
- DeSean Jackson cut by Eagles amid gang rumors
- Ryan Clark meets with Seattle Seahawks
- Lance Moore embracing Steeler Nation
The NFL season never truly stops. Even though the fury of free agency has calmed down there are always things coming out and headlines being made. As we wait our longest wait ever for the NFL draft we definitely are not starving for NFL news. NFL action definitely, NFL news not so much.
Ray Rice was indicted on assault charges on Thursday of last week stemming from an incident in an Atlantic City casino where surveillance footage shows him dragging an unconscious woman through an elevator, a woman he allegedly assaulted immediately before that, and a woman who was apparently his fiancé. Took a play out of Raven’s teammate Terrell Suggs’ playbook and married his assault victim. Per ESPN reports, Ray Rice was married Friday in Las Vegas, the day after he was indicted for simple assault in the third degree, an indictment that could carry a 3-5 year prison sentence.
As I said before if this sounds disgustingly familiar it’s because in 2012 Terrell Suggs married the mother of his children, who previously had a protective order against Suggs claiming that he punched her in the neck and dragged her alongside a car he was driving while their two children sat inside. That wasn’t the only time Suggs had domestic violence charges against him, in 2009 the same woman alleged that he threw a soap dispenser at her head, hit her in the chest with his hand, and held a bottle of bleach over her and their then 1-year old son. Nice guy. Guess that’s how the Baltimore Ravens roll.
Now while being an indicted woman-batterer won’t get you cut from an NFL team, apparently being an alleged gang member will. The Philadelphia Eagles cut their top wide receiver, DeSean Jackson, on Friday amid claims from an NJ.com article that Jackson has gang ties. Now the Eagles never came out to admit that’s why they cut their most productive and targeted wide receiver, nor did the article itself actual substantiate any evidence that Jackson is involved in a gang but that didn’t stop the media frenzy from automatically assuming that the Eagles pulled a move that would be a preemptive Aaron Hernandez cut. The gang stuff with Jackson is clearly all circumstantial and implied but the reality is that there was more credible evidence that Jackson and Eagles head coach Chip Kelly weren’t on the same page and that his large contract was something the team was looking to get out from under. Still, seems funny to me that the NFL is all over targeting a player for maybe being associated with gang members but seems to treat Ray Rice as if it’s just a side note that he beat up a woman and then married her to make the case go away.
Former Steelers safety Ryan Clark is still looking for work in the NFL as opposed to his part-time gig as an ESPN personality. The 34-year-old met with the Super Bowl Champion Seattle Seahawks last week, who are looking to add some depth to their defensive backfield after losing Brandon Browner and Walter Thurmond in free agency. Clark would most likely play the role of holding the safety clipboard, so to speak, as he would definitely be behind Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor on Seattle’s safety depth chart. Possibly that could be the reason why Clark left Seattle without a contract. And the search continues.
While the biggest Steeler news out of last week clearly was the signing of LeGarrette Blount, I couldn’t resist when I saw this on Twitter. Newly signed WR Lance Moore had enlisted his new Steeler Nation followers to design a new Twitter avatar for him to represent his new team. He picked a winner and it’s glorious. Enjoy.
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