Colts ask NFL to put McNary on paid leave

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Colts linebacker Josh McNary has been accused of rape.  McNary denies it.  And McNary’s version of the events could eventually be vindicated.

But that doesn’t matter in the post-Rice NFL, where mere accusations (true or otherwise) can get a guy placed on paid leave pending the outcome of the prosecution.

“After reviewing the documents supporting the very serious criminal charges filed yesterday afternoon against Josh McNary, the Colts have requested Commissioner Goodell to immediately place Josh on the League’s Commissioner Exemption list,” the Colts said in a statement.  “If the request is granted, Josh will not be eligible to practice or attend games with the Club while designated as Commissioner Exempt.  That designation will permit the investigation provided by the League’s Personal Conduct Policy to run its course and will afford Josh the opportunity to focus on his defense against the charges.  The Colts sincerely hope this extraordinarily serious matter will be resolved expeditiously and that justice will prevail.”

McNary becomes the first active player to face paid leave under the new Personal Conduct Policy, which actually was promulgated on December 10, after the alleged incident of December 1.  The NFL stubbornly claims that paid leave isn’t discipline; for a player like McNary who’ll now miss the AFC title game and the Super Bowl, it becomes even harder to support with a straight face the idea that a player who gets paid to not play isn’t being punished.

Meanwhile, the six-week delay between the incident and the formal charges raises real questions about whether McNary should have been placed on paid leave earlier.  The new Personal Conduct Policy expressly requires that notice be given to the league as soon as the player becomes aware of a potential violation.  The police report shows that police questioned McNary and searched his apartment on December 2.  If McNary remained silent about the situation, he could be facing separate discipline.

If the Colts knew and didn’t say anything pending the formal issuance of charges, that could create a separate issue.

Finally, it’s admirable that the Colts have asked that McNary be placed on paid leave.  But McNary is a special-teamer.  A role player.  A replaceable part.  What would the Colts have done if the charges had been made against a more important player, and if the player had denied the allegations, like McNary has?

45 responses to “Colts ask NFL to put McNary on paid leave

  1. Anyone who argues that sitting home while getting paid a lot of money is punishment with a straight face is out of their mind. Especially considering that this guy has sat on the sideline and gotten paid during the last 2 games. For the life of me, I cannot understand why some keep pushing this idea that a paid vacation is punishment. The NFL is a business and many players treat it as such. They heart and passion leaves many guys after high school.

  2. Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty? This trial could take a year or more to come around. I’m not sure why the NFL things their a law enforcement agency in the first place. None of us know if he’s guilty or innocent, that’s for the courts to decide. So why put his life and career on hold before we know?

  3. Simple: Football is a job. You do your job to get paid. If you’re getting paid, you’re not getting punished.

    This is how it works in the real world, and it’s how it should work in the NFL.

  4. The team has “no choice” in these matters with the new policy.

    Maybe Belichick orchestrated all of this ??
    Just kidding.

  5. I believe NFL players don’t get paid their weekly paychecks during the playoffs. They just get the Playoff checks. And as a member of the team who has played every game he would be entitled to the playoff heck whether he plays or not.

  6. If guilty, let him rot. But, if he is cleared of these allegations ,what are the legal repercussions for the woman? Sure, he could sue her, but she should be facing jail time ,if it is discovered somehow her story is untruthful.

  7. I’ve said it once, I’ll say it again. What’s to prevent somebody from paying some chick to make false accusations against a player to try and make a ton of money after a bet is placed?

    Sure, the player will be found innocent later. But hey, if Aaron Rodgers (for example) is paid while suspended, then it’s no harm no foul. Isn’t that what several posters are saying here?!?!

  8. Why is that last paragraph necessary? The league has a policy they must enforce whether you are Andrew Luck or Josh whatever. I think the bigger issue would have been if they had cut Josh and kept Luck. That’s where the discrepancy would lie. Putting Josh on paid leave seems like the way everyone will be treated in this scenario. Hopefully justice will prevail, whatever that may be.

  9. This opens quite a can of worms. Any person can accuse a player of wrong doing and get them suspended with pay before a big game, a division rivalry etc. etc. This is a little bit messy when taken from the board room to the real world. Nothing like that might happen, but it could.

  10. I think we are missing the forest for the trees in all these endless conversations about how and when NFL players should be punished . My question would be, why are NFL players so disproportionately involved (innocent or guilty) in these type of crimes. Why do we not read about baseball/basketball players all the time also? Why are NFL players, or football players in general, such lowlifes that they are involved in these situations so often, as opposed to other athletes??

  11. “McNary who’ll now miss the AFC title game and the Super Bowl”
    Might be missing the Super Bowl anyway. Just sayin’.

  12. I do not like this for one reason. Lets just for the sake of argument say that Green Bay and New England are playing in the Super Bowl. During media week, how many Pats fans are going to create false reports that Rodgers, and Cobb, and Lacy, etc raped them. And at the same time, Green Bay fans are manufacturing rape allegations against Tom Brady, Edelman, etc.

    This precedent means that the Super Bowl will be a terrible game played by back ups because the fan bases of each team were able to get the top players off the field… It is a stupid concept, but is it really that far fetched in todays society??

  13. People seem to have a problem with someone being on paid leave. Well, don’t pay him. Let him fall behind in his financial obligations. Let his dependents go hungry. Let him lose his house, his car and his ability to even pay his legal bills. Let him end up in a homeless shelter. If he’s guilty, he’ll lose those things anyway. If not, you’ve caused him a financial hardship that he may never recover from.

  14. Does someone actually believe that missing the chance to play in the AFC Championship game and/or the Super Bowl is not punishment? This is the chance of a lifetime and you lazy coach potatoes think that getting paid is all that matters? Players dream of playing in a game like this since peewee football and having that dream snatched away at the last minute is not punishment? Sure, winning the lottery is exactly the same as spending your whole life struggling in a lab and winning the Nobel Prize.

  15. It’s really cool that we’ve gotten to the point that a single, as-yet unsubstantiated accusation can ruin one’s career.

    What blessed times in which we live.

  16. The NFL is setting up it’s players as perfect shakedown victims. The longer it takes a player to clear their name the worse the damage to their image and career becomes.

  17. Would the Colts (or any team) be so quick to ask the league to put a player on the new list if he was a star player and not a back up on special teams?

    Also, McNary shouldn’t act so surprised about the allegations since the police already questioned him and searched his place a MONTH ago. Surely the Colts already knew.

  18. This situation is horrible for all involved, alleged vic and alleged perp. But with a suspension this is one big can of worms that will be opened. Not denigrating the lady in this case, but if this guy goes on suspension professional victims will be crawling out of the woodwork wearing their team jerseys. Sorry to have to say that too, and others here have expressed it more eloquently, but I had to chime in. This is bordering Napoleonic laws, folks. My hackles are officially on the rise. NFL you’re really on the down-slide now, congress is looking at you. Looking hard.

  19. love all the colts fan who convinced themselves that this was a set up going into the pats game due to the timing of the events.

    now its clear the incident happened on dec first and the cops opened their investigation on December 2

    as if they needed that information as someone who wanted to cause problems for the colts going into the pats game would have chosen to go after a small role player

  20. Yes players get paid for playoff games, the get a playoff share. Wild card and division round they get $24,000 , $44,000 for conference championship and the Super Bowl loser gets $47,000 and winner $97,000 a piece.

  21. It’s all well and good to say that it’s not a punishment because they’re still getting paid, but what about bonuses and incentives? Lots of players have bonuses built into their contracts for playing time or stats or playoff appearances. Is the team going to pay all of those whether the player meets them or not? Because doing anything else sounds like a punishment to me.

  22. My guess is Paid leave is not full pay. I believe most contracts have performance incentives. By not actually playing, it makes it impossible to reach those incentives, and therefore do not get paid for them. Am I right or wrong?

  23. Eventually we’ll see players looking to get put on the list just so they can collect one last salary.

    Next up should be Rice and Peterson suing the NFL for concussions suggesting years of head trauma has left them aggressive and angry.

    Playing for pay is for suckers.

  24. As a lawyer, how can you possibly not understand the difference between an accusation and a month-long investigation resulting in formal charges? Formal charges means that the DA believes there is some substance to the allegation and that a conviction is at least possible. Failure to charge means the story is false or there is not enough evidence for a possible conviction. I get that you don’t believe the policy is fair but misrepresenting facts makes your conclusions seem biased and invalid. The exempt policy has never been based on accusations. It is based on formal charges. Any discipline under the personal conduct policy (separate issue) can be based on behavior regardless of whether or not formal charges are legally pursued and has nothing to do with the exemption (paid leave) policy. Don’t confuse the readers by lumping them together.

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