It’s been a quiet offseason thus far for the NFL – particularly given the fireworks of the regular season and playoffs (everything from Ray Rice to Deflategate).
But quiet isn’t necessarily a good thing. The NFL still has to decide what to do with Minnesota Viking Adrian Peterson, who pleaded no contest to taking a switch to his 4-year-old; and Carolina Panther Greg Hardy, who had his conviction for domestic abuse overturned; not to mention Deflategate.
Let me make a bold prediction: Peterson and Hardy will be back, and Deflategate will be swept under the rug, because basically the NFL prefers what Simon and Garfunkel would call “the sound of silence.”
One person who is not remaining silent is Seattle Seahawks’ quarterback Russell Wilson. On The Players’ Tribune site started by Derek Jeter, Wilson, who describes himself as “a recovering bully” despite his “Goody Two Shoes” image, wants to talk about domestic violence and then do something about it.
“I want us to Pass the Peace to support victims of domestic violence,” he writes. “The idea behind Pass the Peace is simple: It’s a promise. I’m sharing my love for you. I want to take care of you. I am here for you.
“When you Pass the Peace to a friend, I ask that you make a $2 donation or more to The National Domestic Violence Hotline. It couldn’t be easier. Simply text NYPassThePeace to 41444 to make your contribution. For more information, please visit whynotyoufoundation.com.”
Domestic violence figures prominently in my upcoming NFL novel “The Penalty for Holding” – the second book in the series “The Games Men Play” – but not in the way you might think. The victim is a man as this is a gay love story. But gay or straight, male or female, abuse is abuse.
And as Wilson points out, we cannot afford to stay silent.