John Lynch on Reuben Foster: Can’t go into an ongoing legal matter

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When cornerback Tramaine Brock was arrested in what was described as a domestic violence incident last year, the 49ers didn’t wait long to release him from their roster.

The team has not taken the same approach with linebacker Rueben Foster, who was arrested on charges of domestic violence, threats and possession of an assault weapon on February 12. General Manager John Lynch addressed that arrest publicly for the first time on Wednesday and said that every situation is different.

Lynch said he knows people outside the organization can “read into” that what they might, but didn’t go into further detail about the direction they’ve chosen to take this time.

“We’ve made it a part of our core principles, our core values, that we’re going to be transparent,” Lynch said, via NBC Sports Bay Area. “We feel like the fans deserve to know. We want them to know. With this, we’ve been a little quiet. And that’s for a reason. There are certain places I can’t and won’t go because we’re dealing with an ongoing legal matter. That’s in everyone’s best interest.”

Lynch also touched on last year’s confidence that Foster’s past off-field red flags did not forecast future issues. He said the team wanted to build a “great structure” around the 2017 first-round pick, but found “it’s probably a lot easier” to do so in college than the NFL. Lynch said he and coach Kyle Shanahan have spoken to Foster, who was also arrested for marijuana possession this offseason, about the “high standard” they have for players in the organization.

Those conversations may have come too late to avoid losing the linebacker to a suspension for a portion of the 2018 season and the team’s handling of these situations will likely come up again once the case has reached a point where Lynch can be more forthcoming.

30 responses to “John Lynch on Reuben Foster: Can’t go into an ongoing legal matter

  1. I remember him bragging after the draft last year that he had Foster as the 3rd highest player on his board. What a steal

  2. Yup. All that “high standard” BS goes right out the window when the player in question is star caliber. A random just hanging on to his NFL career guy gets picked up with the same charges? He’d be gone before he bailed out. Sickening behavior by the 49ers.

  3. Typical hypocrites. They cut the marginal player once a charge is made, but make excuses for the high value players until “due process” is completed.

  4. It’s a different situation when it is a guy “that you drafted”. Easy to dump a player from the prior regime, but when it is your guy all of the posturing about not standing for domestic violence goes right out the window. After all it was not your daughter that got smacked around by a guy twice her size in possession of a assault weapon. You are just like all of your colleagues around the league John. The apple as they say does not fall far from the tree.

  5. Yup. All that “high standard” BS goes right out the window when the player in question is star caliber.

    You are just learning this? You must either be really young, naive or both. This is the way the world works. No different in the business world. Those that are elite talents get more rope than average Joes. It’s called life. “Fairness” isn’t a real thing outside of fairy tales.

  6. I love all of these phony people acting like the 9ers are somehow different from any other organization. I wish lynch would say “our goal is to make money. The best way to do that is to win. We can ignore plenty of off field garbage for a good player, at least until fan reaction causes us to lose money. We aren’t there yet with Foster so don’t worry about it.”

  7. Better the player, the more leeway. Same as its always been for every single NFL team anywhere.

    -Pittsburgh – Roethlisburger rape allegations
    -Ravens – Ray Lewis – 2nd degree murder allegations, Ray Rice abuse
    -Patriots – Aaron Hernandez murder convictions
    -Niners – Aldon Smith and Ray McDonald and the brass knuckle guy
    -Oakland – Janikowski giving out Mickey’s

    and on and on and on

  8. Yup. All that “high standard” BS goes right out the window when the player in question is star caliber. A random just hanging on to his NFL career guy gets picked up with the same charges? He’d be gone before he bailed out. Sickening behavior by the 49ers.

    Welcome to the world we live in. This isn’t just an NFL thing. I work in sales and the top sales reps get a lot more rope then someone who’s underperforming. If a top performer is late for work, missed a meeting, no big deal. If you’re struggling to meet your goals you don’t get that kind of treatment. I think the Niners are handling this a lot better then the Cowboys did with Ezekiel Elliott. At least they are acknowledging the situation. Didn’t Dallas say it didn’t happen and call the accuser a liar?

  9. Jed York gutted a winning franchise with this statement:
    “Winning isn’t the only thing matters. Winning with class is what matters.”

    My, my how times have changed since jettisoning Harbaugh and dwelling at the bottom of the league.

    While I completely agree with the notion of due process, it’s what happens after that makes the difference. If you ousted people for alleged actions, you better do it for the ones that are found guilty.


  10. I wanted this dude on the Raiders and I lambasted Reggie for passing on him. I can be a man and say I WAS WRONG! Enjoy, Niners.

    Your dude Conley hasn’t even played and still has lingering rape charges. Don’t be so quick to say you’re wrong.

  11. Lynch, sounds like drafting a guy with red flags in college (and significant injury history)…only to have that guy have character concerns in the NFL sounds very amateur. Maybe had you had real and legitimate front office experience, you would have made a better decision.

  12. Maybe if he played 16 games and had a 100+ tackles. But, he’s injury prone before and after draft day and hasn’t seemed to grow up yet. Peace out Reuben, cut him.

  13. The only thing transparent is your utter hypocrisy… You’d be stupid if the ability of the player DIDN’T have a lot to do with how you deal with such an issue. Some are worth the BS they bring with them, others aren’t, that’s just common sense, and I seriously doubt that very many people have a real issue with that. It’s called life, and nobody ever said it was fair.

  14. Drafting Reuben Foster was a massive mistake, the guy fell to the end of round 1 due to BOTH injury concerns and character issues and what happens his FIRST YEAR in the NFL? He gets injured multiple times, is arrested for Marijuana possesion and a few weeks ago was arrested for FELONY DOMESTIC VIOLENCE after beating his girlfriend with a loaded AR-15 Assualt Rifle which was illegal in California near by!!! Its almost as if one could see this coming……. Their 3rd overall pick Solomon Thomas who they drafted to rush the passer, well it turns out he sucks rushing the passer. Both of their 1st round picks appears to be draft busts, not the way to start out a new regime. I am looking forward to see what kind of Felon they draft this year.

  15. faithful49er707 says:
    February 28, 2018 at 3:23 pm
    The hypocrisy on here is insane

    News flash folks every professional team does this with its elite players, including YOUR favorite team

    In what UNIVERSE is Foster an “Elite” player, the bar to be an “Elite” player must be really, really low in SF if you consider Foster an Elite player. All he has shown thus far is that he is both good at getting hurt and getting arrested, and he can be the hell out of a women. Real “Elite” Behavior there.

  16. From the sounds of the report, he was trying to push his girlfriend out of the house and wasn’t trying to beat her. Clearly, none of the posters here have dated a crazy woman before. Sometimes it just clicks, and you want her out of your house. I’m all for letting the system play out on this one. He probably won’t be charged with anything and will just have to deal with that accordingly with the league.

  17. Even with legal troubles any team needing a MLB would instantly sign him… that and they need him is why he won’t get cut unless he does it constantly over multiple years.

  18. Welcome to being a GM. This is all about the Niners and Lynch taking a chance on a guy many teams had already taken off the board. Lynch won’t do anything to this guy because it will affect his reputation. He’s in for a dollar with Foster. If he had such ideals maybe he should have applied them to this guy. If he had, he wouldn’t have to answer all these questions.

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