NFL14 Cherry Picks W2: TMZ & Profitable Chaos

9 Sep

Coinage in Chaos

Most news reports began with phrases like, “new video has surfaced,” and “obtained by TMZ.com,” sadly, words that’re now nomenclature (std schpeal?) in today’s tawdry tell-all times (“New Video” / SI.com / 9-8-14 / Axson).

The breaking story flooded the media landscape after TMZ released a video Monday showing Ray Rice assaulting his then fiancée, Janay Palmer in-elevator at a New Jersey hotel last February. It followed a criminal conviction against Rice earlier in summer, 2-game NFL ban and a national focus on the issue of domestic violence. This new tape’s public-vetting of the brutal incident has led to Rice‘s quick, same-day release by his Baltimore Ravens team and indefinite NFL suspension.

......H.Levin.4.21.10.G.Hernandez.wc.cca.thumb

The tape, widely disseminated by TMZ, is of rather poor quality but clear enough to show a verbal and physical back n’ forth between the two throughout the brief tapping, ending with Rice visibly knocking-out Palmer with one, severe blow.

Resentment towards Rice, the Ravens, Atlantic County prosecutors and Roger Goodell is at fever pitch and has that now all too common, pitchfork-crowd mentality about it.

But just as clear as the viciousness of Ray Rice in this 2nd video, is that TMZ and its managing editor Harvey Levin will, in all likelihood, profit mightily by its acquisition and marketing, yet, are receiving little or no criticism for their dubious business practice.

As to claim that TMZ’s latest excretion (See; Sterling-Stiviano audio) will aid to heighten public awareness on domestic violence & brutality, that was already accomplished in release of the first Palmer – Rice hall-way video. In their acquisition ($?) & “surfac(ing)” of this in-elevator, video evidence, TMZ et al merely enflamed simmering rancor and may’ve compromised the carefully crafted resolution to this NJ criminal case, one involving input from prosecutors, the principal parties and their legal team.

.......Rice.thumbnail

TMZ, in effect, outed Janay Palmer in releasing the tape, arguably in pursuit of profit & self-promotion. Even were the on-line tabloid to donate a sizable sum to charitable cause (they can‘t donate publicity), is Janay the better for TMZ’s action? Was their decision, one that’s gone largely unquestioned by media, public and a panicky, knee-jerk Ravens club (Rice jersey exchange), done in Palmer’s best interest? Doubtful.

And are we a better nation for its release (2nd tape), to simply get confirmation of an act we already knew (Ray hit Janay hard), if not with certainty, a high probability, even at expense of the victim? That’s not ‘better’ but just one more reason for self-righteous rage.

It did, however, get Bruce Levenson (Atlanta Hawks) off sporting oven’s front-burner.

Not privy to details or inner-workings of the prosecutor’s office, I’ll hazard a guess that where an accused (Rice) has no prior record of abuse and the victim is desirous to afford a second chance, authorities listen and heed the call, w/in clearly defined parameters.

Janay, who’d already had support from much of the public, can’t be too happy w/release of this new video. TMZ’s play may only worsen her and husband’s state as he’s expected to undergo counseling. Hopefully they’ve the strength & support network to ride it out, for with a likely life-time NFL ban looming, Ray’s now gonna be home alot. Thanks, Harv.

.......Goodell.thumbnail.flag

As for Goodell and the 2g ban he initially gave Rice, while the under-fire Commissioner will try to appease the mawkish mob, whether he (& favored media) saw this video previously or not (he claims not), Roger likely acted in respect of prosecutor’s determination, the victim’s wish and refused to contradict those interests merely to win PR points.

Any view rejecting such theory on Goodell can only be possessed by a prejudice, or, dumbfounded in their belief of either one of three crazy postulations as to his motive for not rendering a stiffer penalty initially on Rice: 1) He’s an incredible bias in favor of the Ravens, so much so he’d risk reputation & job to satisfy it; 2) he’s suddenly turned too timid to punish wrong-doers sufficiently (See: Al. Smith, J.Gordon, Bountygate, Bullygate, etc.); or 3) he dislikes women and was not moved by the in-elevator tape when viewing. Crazy.

But try telling that to the Mob of Concern.

Sexual Orientation – Affirmative Action?

Peter King (NBC – SI) and S.A. Smith (ESPN) reported on Thursday (9/4) the NFL made contact with various teams regarding Mike Sam after he failed to latch on with the Rams.

Assuming the King & Smith comments are full & factual, the appropriateness of the action, reaching-out to determine or cultivate team interest in Sam, who’s since been signed to the Dallas Cowboys practice squad, may turn on exactly what information the NFL was acting upon and their particular motive involved.

.......Sam.11.30.13.wc.cca.M.Qwertyus.1.3m

If NFL believes Sam has pro-skills and learned the former Tiger was being denied a fair chance (prejudice), one that others of his set would receive, then the calls are tantamount to either a pre-emptive legal move, or NFL – AA (Affirmative Action: a pro-active hiring practice designed to level a playing field and root out entrenched racial prejudice in hiring, a government policy since the 60s that’s much debated still today.

While many players have spoken publicly since Sam’s declaration last spring about homosexual orientation not being a problem in their respective NFL locker-rooms, has there been a less accommodating, un-spoken policy amongst certain management?

If, on the other hand, the League had little basis for 1) judging Mike’s skill set, or 2) did not hear-tell that prejudice was precluding his signing-on w/another club, then what these reports claim are likely predicated on an NFL – NFLPA purpose in PR and commerce.

The NFL is a private entity and can legally promote itself how it sees fit. If King & Smith are disseminating, this leak had purpose. The problem here: such a policy, if it exists, may do more harm than good to future, openly gay players as AA is a polarizing position.

Encouraging Signs

It was only the Cowboys and Romo was pretty awful (3 INTs), but it was in Big D and Colin Kaepernick showed a new found poise in the pocket in 49ers 28 – 17 victory (16 -23 / 201y / 2TDs). CK took hits and used mobility to find targets, not to scamper.

.......Kaep.wc.cca.2.3.13.Au.Kirk

Geno Smith had 3rd-best comp-% (82) in Jets history (23 – 28 / 221y / 1-1), leading New York to 19 – 14 home opener win vs. Oakland. C. Ivory ran for 102y (71 – 1td) for NYJ. Raider highlight: 2nd-year LB Sio Moore with 11 tackles, 2 assists and a sack. Busy.

Curious Quotes

Not every defense, can’t stop every play:” Former Ravens’ coach, Brian Billick, working analysis on NFL GameDay Live, Sunday afternoon. Yogi Berra would be proud, BB.

“Beers:” How one host on NFL GameDay Live pronounces ‘Bears.’ Watch much sports?

This is a pass – fail League, today we failed:” Browns’ new head coach Mike Pettine, of the ‘glass half-empty’ school, after his club fell at Pittsburgh in a gutsy loss, 27 -30. Try “Ac-Cent-Tchu-At(ing) the Positive,” next time, Mike, your men played with spirit.

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Cherry Picks Week 2: Bounce Back

Pittsburgh Steelers (1-0) @ Baltimore Ravens (0-1): 9-11 NBC 8:30 EST: Ravens win.

Arizona Cardinals (1-0) @ New York Giants (0-1): 9-14 Fox 1:00: NYG wins.

Miami Dolphins (1-0) @ Buffalo Bills (1-0): CBS 1:00: Dolphins win.

New England Patriots (0-1) @ Minnesota Vikings (1-0): CBS 1:00: Patriots win.

Detroit Lions (1-0) @ Carolina Panthers (1-0): Fox 1:00: Panthers win.

Atlanta Falcons (1-0) @ Cincinnati Bengals (1-0): CBS 1:00: Bengals win.

Seattle Seahawks (1-0) @ SD Chargers (0-1) (GOTW): Fox 4:10: Bolts win.

Kansas City Chiefs (0-1) @ Denver Broncos (1-0): CBS 4:30: Chiefs win.

New York Jets (1-0) @ Green Bay Packers (0-1): CBS 4:30: Packers win.

Chicago Bears (0-1) @ San Francisco 49ers (1-0): NBC 8:35: Bears win.

Philadelphia Eagles (1-0) @ Indianapolis Colts (0-1): 9-15 ESPN: IND wins.

Steven Keys
NFL Hunch Line
Photo Credits: H.Levin / wc.cca / G.Hernandez / 4.2.10; R.Rice / 1ravencowboysnflfan / 8.12.12 / wc.cca ; R.Goodell / wc.cca / SSG.T.Wade / USMA; M.Sam / wc.cca / 11.30.13 / M.Qwertyus; C.Kaepernick / 2.3.13 / Au.Kirk / wc.cca; Cherries / wc.cca / B.Kua / 6.1.08.

Posted: 9-9-14 @ 5:52, 6:56, 11:55pm EST

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