Unsportsmanlike Conduct: Many NFL Protesters Have Lengthy Arrest Records

AP Ross D. Franklin Anthem Protest
AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin

While NFL players who protest the anthem, cast themselves as upright crusaders for the rule of law and equality. The arrest statistics for the NFL paint a far different picture, of how a lot of these social justice warriors truly regard the rule of law.

Arrest statistics for the league show that an NFL player is arrested every seven days, on average, for crimes as varied as domestic abuse and rape, gun violations, drug offenses, disorderly conduct, burglary, breaking traffic laws, and occasionally even murder.

About three to four players are arrested every month according to Patrick Murphy at NFL Arrests, a website that tracks the NFL’s arrests and charges.

The site notes that since the year 2000, the longest the NFL went without an arrest has been 65 days. The site also notes, for instance, that a player was arrested seven days ago as of October 2.

Since 2000 there have been 218 drunk driving arrests, 100 drug offenses, 98 players arrested for domestic violence, and another 44 arrested for disorderly conduct.

The team with the most arrests and offenders is the Minnesota Vikings, according to Murphy’s database. The next four are the Denver Broncos, the Cincinnati Bengals, the Tennessee Titans, and the Jacksonville Jaguars falling in with the fifth most arrested players.

The total number of NFL arrests for 2017, stands at 32. Here is a list of the various offenses:

  • Assault and battery – 7
  • Drugs – 6
  • DUI – 5
  • Domestic violence – 5
  • Disorderly conduct – 4
  • Resisting arrest – 2
  • Guns – 1
  • License/traffic – 1
  • Other – 1

The arrest breakdown by position is as follows:

  • Wide receiver – 140
  • Linebacker – 119
  • Cornerback – 116
  • Running back – 99
  • Defensive tackle – 80

Many of the players who have knelt in protest during the anthem, have arrest records as well.

As week 4 began, over a dozen players took a knee for the playing of the anthem, over a dozen raised the militant black power fist, eight more stayed seated during the anthem, several entire teams linked arms, but stood, for the song, and one player refused to take the field. Only four of the 32 teams stood with no pretensions to protesting.

Here are some of the players who knelt or otherwise protested in Week 4, who have also been arrested:

  • Baltimore Ravens Terrell Suggs for aggravated assault in March 2003 and leaving the scene of an accident and driving with a suspended license in March 2016
  • Buffalo Bills Marcell Dareus was arrested for felony drug possession and reckless driving charges in two separate incidents in 2014
  • Denver Broncos outside linebacker Von Miller, for failure to appear in court on previous traffic charges, including careless driving and driving without a license, in Aug. 2013 and driving with a suspended license in Sept. 2013
  • Jacksonville Jaguars Dante Fowler for assault and battery in July of 2017 and March of 2016
  • Kansas City Chiefs Demetrius Harris was arrested for felony marijuana possession in March 0f 2017
  • New Orleans Saints Adrian Peterson was cited for injuring a child in 2014
  • New Orleans Saints Alex Okafor  for evading arrest and fleeing the scene after police tried to apprehend him in March 2015
  • Pittsburgh Steelers Artie Burns was taken in for driving with a suspended license in June of 2017
  • Pittsburgh Steelers Le’Veon Bell was arrested for marijuana possession in 2014
  • Seattle Seahawks Trevone Boykin for marijuana possession and probation violations in March 2017 and April 2017
  • Tennessee Titans Derrick Morgan for speeding and driving with a suspended license in June 2010
  • Ray Lewis, who knelt with his former teammates in Week 3, for murder in Jan. 2000; though, Lewis ended up testifying in the case and received one year of probation and a $250,000 fine from the NFL
  • Seattle Seahawks Frank Clark for a domestic violence case in which he punched, choked, and slammed his girlfriend to the ground in-front of children.

Its important to note, that these players represent only a fraction of all players with records, who have protested at some point this year. Given the rather extensive familiarity that protesting NFL players have with the police, its getting easier to understand why they want cops to have less power.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.


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