Jaguars help Patriots, in a roundabout way

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The Patriots’ apologists suddenly have gotten very quiet.

For many of them, their strongest arguments in support of the team’s decision to release defensive lineman Kyle Love evaporated when the Jaguars realized that football and Type-2 diabetes can coexist.

But the Jaguars actually have helped the Patriots, in a sense.  While the decision to embrace Love tends to make even stronger the notion that the Patriots violated his rights by viewing him as someone who was unable to continue to perform as a football player, picking up Love’s contract via waivers means that, if Love were to sue the Patriots, his financial damages would be minimal.

Though if Love fails to make the 53-man roster in Jacksonville he could argue that he would have made it in New England, that would likely be far too speculative in a court of law.  By being claimed on waivers, the Pats essentially are off the hook financially.

It doesn’t make what the Patriots did right.  The team has not responded to a PFT request for comment, and no amount of off-the-record spin being espoused by writers covering the team regarding concerns such as Love’s performance slipping in 2012 and the addition of other players who may be better than Love changes the fact that the Pats cut Love not because of his performance or his competition but because of a medical condition.  We know this because the team released Love in the immediate aftermath of his diagnosis with the “non-football illness” designation.

While the Patriots may suffer no consequence or reprimand for a fairly blatant violation of Love’s human rights (because, you know, they’re the Patriots), the Jaguars deserve to be praised for ignoring a condition that can be treated and controlled.  Many people operate successfully with diabetes, and every diabetic should be a fan of the Jaguars moving forward.

Meanwhile, we can only wonder how Patriots defensive lineman Vince Wilfork, whose foundation benefits diabetes research, feels about the situation.  Maybe he’ll eventually have something to say about it.

49 responses to “Jaguars help Patriots, in a roundabout way

  1. Belichick is cold-blooded. Oh well, it’s not like they’re going to make the Super Bowl this season with Gronk and his 4 arm surgeries thanks to an extra point and with Amendola being a two-hand touch away from IR. Not to mention the Broncos going all-in with free agency.

  2. I feel like its more of an incentive to sue the Patriots. Your eliminating the risk of being blackballed since you already have a new team. Of course I would get my contract first.

    The statute of limitations is 180 for any ADA case. This gives Love plenty of time to prove himself worthy of a few million from the well-under-the-cap Jaguars.

  3. “football and Type-2 diabetes can coexist”
    Yes they can. But how many generously-listed 315 pound DTs have done so?

    And why did only one team put in a claim on Love, if you’re so sure that he won’t have any problems playing?

  4. Or maybe because the Jaguars are coming off a 2-14 season and they need alot of help on both sides of the ball.

    Maybe this gives them an opportunity for their medical staff to evaluate Love?

    Nah, its much easier to stir the masses.

  5. Seriously? He had a non-football injury/illness- he was subsequently cut. Who cares if he could have been a serviceable part for them? By virtue of his diagnosis he carries a higher risk of injury/illness/issue in the future- the Patriots chose NOT to accept that risk while the Jags obviously chose to accept it with eyes wide open.

    How is this a story?

  6. Disgusting move by a normally classy franchise. Good to see the Jags picked him up, hopefully he continues to improve as a player down there in Jax.

  7. sportsreporterusa says:
    May 16, 2013 5:04 PM
    You know what Mike – now you are being completely unreasonable. For starters, read the ADA laws before you continue to make assertions that what the Patriots did was illegal.

    Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (the “ADA”)(1) requires an employer(2) to provide reasonable accommodation to qualified individuals with disabilities who are employees or applicants for employment, unless to do so would cause undue hardship. “In general, an accommodation is any change in the work environment or in the way things are customarily done that enables an individual with a disability to enjoy equal employment opportunities.”


    Us Patriots fans, really like Kyle Love both as a football player and as a person. With that said – neither you, me, nor anyone else in the public purview, outside of Kyle Love, his doctor, the Patriots and possibly his agent, know what the medical accommodation needs to be so that Kyle can be healthy while living with diabetes.

    If the doctor said that Kyle needs to lose 30 pounds so that his BMI is reduced and the associated life risks with TII Diabetes are minimized then the Patriots would have to incur an undue hardship of carrying his employment.

    Maybe that is why the Patriots asked him to retire for a year, keep his signing bonus for the year so that he could be medically healthy for 2014.

    Also, you need to stop using red herring arguments like Wilfork’s Foundation. His good works have nothing to do with Love’s medical condition unless Wilfork’s Foundation is doing work that is directly linked to Love’s medical condition.

    The same red herring can be used regarding football and diabetes can co-exist. We know that it can co-exist. The issue is according each specific instance for covered employees and as an attorney, you should know that.

    I don’t know what your deal is but I think that you should carefully re-think your hypothesis and report to MJD so that you do a mea culpa regarding this story and your previous two stories regarding Kyle Love.

  8. Agreed very much that it might not have been right.

    But the problem is the NFL doesn’t hold itself accountable or its partners accountable to do the “right” thing. That’s just not the philosophy that governs the league as chosen by those that get to collectively decide.

  9. Oh yeah, and let’s act like the Patriots didn’t draft Marcus Cannon after his cancer, sign Armond Armstead after his heart attack, help Tedy Bruschi return to the field after a stroke, or work with Matt Light through his decade as a starting left tackle with Crohn’s.

    They clearly think this situation is a lot worse than any of those.

  10. Can someone just go ahead and write “if Kyle Love was as good as Wilfork, he would not have been cut”, and be done with it?

    That’s what we’re talking about here. Love is not a good enough player for the Patriots to care (or deal with the fact) that he has type-2 diabetes.

    Everything else is lip service.

  11. Uh yeah, clearly the Patriots have no shot at winning the Super Bowl.
    What kinda shot were you giving Baltimore at this time last year?

  12. Knowing that you never miss a chance to take a shot at the Pats (typical Steeler’s fan). Why don’t you mention how the Pats dealt for 10 years with Matt Light’s Crone’s disease, and Marcus Cannon’s cancer trials.

    Wouldn’t it be better to think of this as a blessing for Love. A chance to regain his health and get his disease under control before continuing his NFL career.

    Love was a UDFA who grew into a useful role playerm, but he was limited in what he could do. He was already surpassed by Deadrick at the end of the year, who was also a marginal player.

    Face it, Mike the league is changing. Spread offenses, read options, mobile QB’s, etc requires a different kind of defensive lineman. BB used to love the “big fatties” but the need is for more athletic and quicker DLmen.

    The Pats can do better than Love and Deadrick. Even now guys like Casey Hampton will be available at the vet minimum when camp rolls around.

    BTW- I am also a victim of type 2 Diabetes, and have been a daily insulin taker for the last 6 years. But I only have to deal with golf, scuba and walking. Its a lot different dealing with diabetes in my situation than in the intense world of the NFL.

    Thanks for being consistent and predictible, Mike. You got that going for you… least. But its STILL not going to make up for those 2 embarassing home losses in the AFCCG.

  13. There are no ‘human rights’ in American law. There is only the Constitution. Florio sounds like a liberal loon here. No doubt he won’t be satisfied until two NFL players are allowed to get married during the Super Bowl halftime.

  14. The decision to sign the player is not referendum on his ability to play with the disease as much as it is an indication that they’re willing to take on a flyer on him. Granted, if he wants to play and willing to take that risk then he should do so. But he should also own that risk with no one else being forced or coerced into assuming it.

    What’s interesting is that in a time where we’ve decided that player safety is at a premium, looking out for the well being of this player is taking a back seat to his “right” to play. I’m not sure why one is different than the other, but if we’re going to beat the drum over player safety, it might serve us well to be consistent.

  15. Again…is this disease covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act? Cuz I’m not so sure.

  16. I’m a jags fan and not a pats fan by any stretch of the imagination. But my mom is type 2 because she was overweight a lot of her life. She is diet controlled now and takes no medication and constantly measures her sugar level. This is her life and she has to be careful b/c she is allergic to most of the meds that are given for the type 2 version. She has lost toes and a lot of feeling in her feet because of it.

    I don’t blame the pats for cutting him if they got the information from the doctors on the risk. He’s a defensive tackle and can’t exactly get down to 180lbs and eat salad all the time. His life as a football player will be difficult to manage and balance and he will have to be on meds. His doctors will have to help him figure that out.

    And I don’t blame the Jags for picking him up and trying to help him figure out how to manage it. He was a decent player according some some people I know who are pats fans. It doesn’t hurt anything to work with him over the summer on his health to see if it will work. If it won’t, the jags will probably end up having to cut him also. He has to find a balance between keeping his weight up and being able to keep his sugar low. But either way it’s a risk and it’s a scary thing for a football player. I know the problems my mom has had and she’s not required by her job to be overweight..

  17. Yikes Florio – Jags also grabbed Deaderick. Seems like they are looking for D-line help. Further, the fact that a “non-football illness” designation exists for releasing players would indicate that medical conditions are an accepted reason to release a player. Finally, if the evidence that Love was discriminated against is that he caught on with another team, wouldn’t that give any injured player who is released and then signs with another team grounds to sue? Also, calling this a human rights violation is pretty sensationalist.

  18. “The team has not responded to a PFT request for comment, and no amount of off-the-record spin being espoused by writers covering the team regarding concerns such as Love’s performance slipping in 2012 and the addition of other players who may be better than Love changes the fact that the Pats cut Love not because of his performance or his competition but because of a medical condition.”

    Translation: This NFL team only addressses legitimate journalists queries and ignores those of petulant children masquerading as blogger/lawyers.
    You’ve outdone yourself over the past 24 hours Florio, and appear to have dropped all pretense of professionalism with this topic. If NBC was wise, they’d cut you loose before you damage their brand anymore than you already have.

  19. the pats can do whatever they want with virtually no repercussions. If it were the Ravens, Skins or Cowboys, Goodell would have been all over them yesterday!

  20. RC33 – Yes, Diabetes is covered under the ADA. But there are limitations as to what companies need to do to accommodate such things. That being said, the Patriots more than covered themselves by offering to place Love on the NFI list. He would still be an employee. He’d have access to the teams doctors/facilities. He just wouldn’t be playing on Sunday until such time as he proved that he had the disease under control.

  21. jbniner – well said. It is ironic isn’t it. I guess Florio doesn’t care about player safety when it comes to diabetes and the potential impact of that medical condition during training camp, especially during those two a days.

    I hope that Kyle stays safe and healthy and that the Jags make the reasonable accommodations during training camp so that he doesn’t over-exert himself causing his blood sugar to drop dramatically.

  22. I hate the pats…but cant a team cut a guy because they can get better players?

    If wilfork had the beetus, the pats wouldnt cut him.

  23. Typical Patriots….they cut Marquis Hill after he died just because he couldn’t play he would’ve been better then most of Oakland’s run defenders. Let’s not forget Darryl Stingley yea he was paralyzed but come on. Cold basing their roster and people’s skill and health. No one in the NFL has ever been cut because of an injury or health concern……tisk tisk Patriots

  24. Well I certainly hope Armond Armstead and Marcus Cannon make the team, because I really don’t want to read an article about the scoundrel Patriots cutting heart attack and cancer survivors.

  25. hey braven4evr, you forgot the saints and steelers on your list give him a few more years and the list of teams on his sh… list will be longer than the teams that aren’t however even if it gets to 31 the pats would be that team 32 they get all the favors of the commissioner go back to spygate its not gonna change but at least I can always be a pats hater and a goodell hater as well

  26. I really like Kyle Love’s game and I’m glad he got picked up. That said, Mike you’re on the wrong side of the fence on this one. Patriots tried to offer him options that were in his best interests, that gave him an opportunity to maintain his health and continue his career in a year. The Jaguars signed him, I hope they do what’s right and you’re not back saying that he played when he shouldn’t have sometime this year.

  27. I’ll take him. 315 lb run stopper? Come to Jax for Camp buddy and by August 31 you’ll have lost so much weight you may be healthier on the diabetes end.

    He should still sue NE.

  28. When was Love diagnosed with Diabetes? Has he been dealing with it for some time now? And it just so happens that it becomes public knowledge at the same time the Pats choose to cut him?

    Is it possible that the Pats have been working with Love, trying to make things work, but to no avail? Hence the choice of retiring for a year or get cut?

  29. dontcorrectmeplz says: May 16, 2013 5:07 PM

    Disgusting move by a normally classy franchise
    I don’t like the Pats, but “Disgusting”? The NFL is not Wal-Mart, it’s not Staples, it’s not Dunder-Mifflin. The NFL is an industry where you can be cut for being out-of-shape, getting hurt on the job, or getting old: holding the NFL to the same requirements as the rest of America’s corporations is just absurd.

    Hiring and firing in the NFL need to be based on merit, not PR. The NFL has no need to employ anyone but the best athletes in America.

    If Love has standing to sue, I also have standing to sue– on the grounds that I was denied work by NFL due to my lack of size, speed, and athleticism.

  30. benh999 says: May 16, 2013 5:20 PM

    Violated his rights? Seriously?
    Exactly. The NFL is not Wal-Mart, it’s not Staples, it’s not Dunder-Mifflin. The NFL is an industry where you can be cut for being out-of-shape, getting hurt on the job, or getting old: holding the NFL to the same requirements as the rest of America’s corporations is just absurd.

    Hiring and firing in the NFL need to be based on merit, not PR. The NFL has no need to employ anyone but the best athletes in America.

    If Love has standing to sue, I also have standing to sue– on the grounds that I was denied work by NFL due to my lack of size, speed, and athleticism.

  31. I fail to see how the pats did anything but act properly. Love was diagnosed them pats gave him the option of taking a year to get his weight and health in order ( for which they also told him he could keep his bonus money that would have belonged to the pats) or they could cut him and let him try it with another team. I only know of type 2 diabetes and football coexisting in jay cutler, who happens to be in pretty good shape. Kyle love is over 315 which is practically a death sentence for people with this disease. Giving him a year to get his weight down and see how that would affect his game seems pretty damn reasonable, even more so when you consider what his role was at the end of last season. What kind of lawsuit do you think the pats would get hit with if they allowed him to continue at that weight and he suffered health issues from it? It’s the same line of reasoning in the concussion lawsuits. But keep trying to make an issue where one doesn’t exist, seems to be this sites forte lately.

  32. All the people crying about NE being ruthless are the same whiners who think rich people are evil, that might hurt someone’s feelings dont do that, woe-is-me types! NFL is a business. He no longer fits the business motto. Tough luck, WORK HARD AND BE READY FOR ANOTHER OPPORTUNITY! Too many softies.

  33. “beacuse, you know, they are the Patriots”


    So much for journalism being impartial, heh.

    I could repeat what a lot of others are saying about how he had a couple choices, and how a DT/DE with that much weight may really have a problem with diabetes that would require a lot of work and effort to maintain control. But obviously, you don’t care about that.

    Don’t worry though, I’ll still keep reading because this is still a site that compiles a lot of NFL info into one neat little spot.

  34. Dear the guy above who said he isn’t good because only the jaguars put a claim on him……just don’t bother commenting if you don’t know how the waiver wire works. The Jaguars were the second team , that had an opportunity to claim him.

  35. I love all this BB is cold blooded comments, every NFL is cold blooded. Take a look at how many players were released this week NFI, come on people smarten up.

    Also if BB & Pats are cold blooded for releasing Love I guess they should be saints for signing his replacement Armond Armstead who had a heart problem and who most in the leauge would touch even after he went to CFL. In addition for drafting OL Marcus Cannon who was projected to be a 2nd Rd pick who they picked in 5th because he had cancer. Please with the conspiracy theory stories about diabetes, it seems as though Patriots were generally concerned about Love’s health and requested he take a year away from the game, he and his agent chose to be released.

    It would be good if Florio addressed the Armstead and Cannon situations with regard to this story.

  36. Rediculous! Deaderick was ahead of Love in the depth chart end of last year… They cut him too. Lots of teams take Patriots cast-offs. He can’t play better then the guys they have. That’s it. Cutting him was a favor. Now he has a job again instead of sitting for a whole year. The only role type 2 diabetes may have played in the decision is that it contributed to his reduced level of play.

  37. Why not look at both sides? I’m not saying I think people with diabetes should be released or discriminated against.

    Kyle Love was unable to take part in the Patriots offseason program. When the Patriots eventually get their side of the story out, they will say that he was unable to pass a team physical. He wasn’t flat out released. The Patriots terminated his contract under the Non-Football Injury/Illness clause. The player was never going to be able to pass a team physical. The Patriots do not interfere with the team doctors, they obviously pick them though.

    So what are the Patriots to do? They begged him to retire for a year. With proper diet and medicine he could have beat the disease and returned to football. Wouldn’t that have been better for this long term health? Isn’t that what about half the posts on PFT are about lately?

    He wanted to play. He has the right to play. The Patriots have no right to tell him how live his life or if he is able to play to a high level. Kyle Love has the right to play football, but he does not have the right to a roster spot. He has to earn it, just like everyone else. The Patriots have had other players who were stricken with diabetes, most recently Kendall Simmons. You have not seen the medical reports on Kyle Love. You do not know the extent to which those reports inhibit or not his football playing ability and long term health.

    The Patriots didn’t just put him on the shelf all year, they could have put him on IR/PUP. They let him go so that he could play football in 2013. Let’s see how far he gets with the Jaguars. I wish him luck both on the field and off. He is a remarkable young guy and is the only (one of the only?) NFL players born in South Korea. We will miss him in New England.

  38. Additionally, the player has to make many changes to his diet and he will not know how these dramatic changes and meal regimens will affect his body and performance.

    In Type I diabetes, which is insulin-dependent, the player merely monitors his glucose levels and injects the appropriate amount of insulin through pen or pump depending on what he plans to eat or how far over the target glucose level he is.

  39. I am sick to death of people thinking jobs belong to people and that employees should be treated with loyalty like you would treat your spouse. One of the reasons I love the NFL is that it is (was??) a meritocracy. Thanks to an abundance of laws, most workplaces aren’t anymore.

    I wish Kyle Love well. I am glad he played for my team and he represented it well. Jags fans, you got a good dude who you will know loves the game.

  40. This whole patriot bashing thing is a little ridiculous. Kyle Love is hardly the first person to lose his job or not get a job because of medical reasons.

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