NFL on brink of ignoring rules yet again

Charges against the Jets are being ignored by the NFL
As if Deflate Gate was not enough to put doubt in the minds of Patriots fans, Goodell and company are likely on the verge of ignoring rules that are interfering with the Patriots ability to operate this offseason. Weeks ago, Woody Johnson of the New York Jets proclaimed that he would "love" to have Revis reunite with the Jets.

This is common sense, but also against the rules in the NFL. The technical term is tampering, which is an attempt to lure a player/coach/executive away from another team while under contract. This was as clear an example of tampering as there has been in recent memory. So how could the NFL screw this up?

While the NFL is currently in the middle of investigations regarding the Cleveland Browns and their illegal texting, the Atlanta Falcons pumping in crowd noise to their stadium, and the deflated football nonsense, they have yet to really investigate or put much effort into these tampering allegations. This may be having severe consequences for the Patriots. As Tom E. Curran points out in his CSNNE article, Revis has to be intrigued when an owner says:

"Darrelle is a great player, and if I thought I could have gotten Darrelle for (what the Patriots paid), I probably would've taken him...I'd love for Darrelle to come back."

If money is his driving interest, why wouldn't Revis at least want to hear what Johnson will offer? If it means making him the highest, or near highest, paid defensive player, would being on a losing team for a few more years really mean anything to him?

Unfortunately for the Patriots, Revis' contract is the biggest issue this offseason, and regardless of other free agents, his deal needs to come first due to the high salary cap hit. Until Revis decides what he wants to do the Patriots essentially cannot make many moves, barring the decision on his option.

The other issue is the punishment for what the Jets did. Typical penalties include a draft pick or picks. There have been previous cases in which picks have been stripped from teams. The San Francisco 49ers were stripped of a 5th round pick in 2008 for trying to lure Lance Briggs away from the Bears. In a more recent case, not only did the Detroit Lions lose a pick, but were forced to swap picks with the team they tampered with, the Kansas City Chiefs. Given the degree of a player that Revis is, this very well could result in a similar case. That is if the NFL follows through with a correct and just ruling. We know how that goes.

In reality, this is a clear violation of a well established rule in the NFL, and the league office is dragging their feet, as they've done all season. NFL spokesperson Greg Aiello said that the investigation is "pending", or at the same point in the process as the other three investigations. This has been the most damaging season for the NFL's image in recent memory, and with the pathetic handling of these cases so far this offseason, things aren't looking any better.

When is too soon to start to demand a change of leadership in the NFL? The Commission has lost two legal cases with Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson, he's had over a half dozen players arrested for sexual/domestic violence, and has yet to wrap up simple investigations. Enough is enough.

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