NFL’s conclusion on Myles Garrett’s claim of a slur overlooks one key piece of evidence

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Regarding Browns defensive end Myles Garrett‘s claim that Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph uttered a racial slur before last Thursday night’s melee, the NFL has said, “We looked into it and found no such evidence.”

Actually, there is evidence. The evidence comes from the version of the events shared by Garrett.

At a time when so many inaccurate things are being said by folks who know better about “hearsay,” Garrett hearing Rudolph say a slur becomes direct evience that Rudolph used a slur.

The more accurate explanation would be that the league found no corroboration of Garrett’s claim. But that doesn’t make Garrett’s claim inaccurate.

And finding no corroboration is a far cry from finding evidence that debunks Garrett claim.

If the league truly wanted to get to the bottom of this one, it would be easy to at least try. Bring Garrett and Rudolph to New York (or travel to them), grill them separately, and then make a decision. That’s what the league recently did in the Antonio Brown case, where one side claims one thing and the other contends the exact opposite.

One side is right, and one side is wrong. A skilled interrogator would have as good a chance as anyone at getting to the truth.

The broader question is whether the league wants to get to the truth, or whether the league simply prefers that it go away.

The league beefed up its enforcement of rules against the use of slurs several years ago. Only a small handful of players have fined since then.

57 responses to “NFL’s conclusion on Myles Garrett’s claim of a slur overlooks one key piece of evidence

  1. Yes, but that “evidence’ is worthless as it is clear “Jussie” Garrett made it up.

    I hope he gets sued for the assault with the helmet and the attempted character assasination.

  2. Far be it for me to say because I am not a football player.

    But as a black male, if someone used a racial slur towards me, the only course of action that I really have is to just smile and move on. Yes, I could choose to “keep it real” but any aggressive action I take would not end well for me.

  3. The Rooneys will never let anything that might reflect bad on the organization happen from here on in. The narrative is exactly where they want it, with Tomlin firing a very weak broadside after the fact saying ” I don’t think we did anything to start it”. Mike, please stop ignoring that the league is stonewalling the punishment of Rudolph. Why? He’s not some minor player who came off the sidelines to join the fight.

  4. One side is right, and one side is wrong. A skilled interrogator would have as good a chance as anyone at getting to the truth.
    —–
    It’s also possible that both sides could be partially right and partially wrong. I find that often times the truth is somewhere in the middle when you have opposing perspectives.

  5. Evidence is verifiable. If a thing can’t be proven as fact, it’s not evidence. Otherwise it’s either opinion or testimony. Neither of which is evidence.

  6. Honestly does it matter?

    Should players get suspended for using the n-word now? No.

    Is he now indemnified because a slur was used? Also no.

    Should Rudolph have been suspended for his actions we saw on replay? Absolutely.

    One action doesn’t justify or belittle the other.

  7. Quite obviously he said something. How else does one explain Garrett’s seemingly unhinged action? Besides, it’s the seriousness of the charge that matters and we have an obligation to believe the victim of racism when serious charges such as this are leveled. I mean, why would he lie?

  8. There’s no word more incendiary, yet somehow no one heard it but him. And it took him days to tell anyone. This just doesn’t pass the smell test.

  9. Yes, let’s set a precedent where any team’s QB can have his week disrupted with a lengthy interview process out of state.

    I can already see the wheels spinning amongst the Jets, Colts, and Ravens front office.

  10. There is no debate. The NFL and Garrett got so lucky that Rudolph wasn’t seriously injured. If the crown of the helmet had hit Rudolph in the nose or forehead, you could be talking about a life changing, disabling injury or worse. We all could have witnessed him kill someone on National Television. That is the only issue. That cannot stand whether something was said or not. He is only being defended because Rudolph wasn’t seriously injured.

  11. Mason Rudolph has probably been playing football since he was around 6-years-old. Is there even ONE instance when he has used a racial slur? EVER? EVEN ONCE? Or did he wait until a Thursday night game in his 2nd NFL season to use it for the FIRST TIME EVER on Myles Garrett?

  12. It doesn’t matter and it doesn’t change anything. The NFL didn’t say that’s its not possible. They just said they didn’t find evidence. By that they mean evidence that could stand up in any court. But none of that matters anyway. Let’s say Rudolph did use a racial slur. Does that mean at any time in the future, a Browns’ opponent just has to use a racial slur to get the Browns’ best player ejected from the game? Hey, the guy walking down the sidewalk just used a racial slur toward me, so I shot him. That sure is a convenient excuse. Even though I have a history of shooting guys for no reason. Myles Garrett had 2 personal fouls against Trevor Siemian, and the 2nd one put Siemian out for the season. Perhaps Siemian used a racial slur too. Just stop with all this nonsense. People have to take responsibility for their actions. Excuses are a dime a dozen. It would be pretty naïve to think that no player in NFL history has ever uttered a racial slur toward another, but this is the first time I’ve ever seen a guy yank a helmet off another player and crack him over the head with it. Myles Garrett should be banned for life.

  13. Why is Garrett the only one who heard it? All those players and officials right there. Why did he keep it a secret until his hearing? Now he won’t just be regarded as a dirty player. He’ll be looked at as a liar too…

  14. I have evidence he didn’t say it. Madon Rudolph says he didn’t so that’s evidence enough. Fabrications to justify criminal acts is not evidence in any sense. This is the dumbest thing ever written and shocked you write it. When you were a lawyer is this how how defended your clients? No wonder you don’t practice law anymore.

  15. I still think Rudolph was dumb to go running after Garrett after his helmet was off. If someone has a weapon and you don’t then you don’t go chasing after someone. If a racial slur was made which is unclear then don’t we still need to restrain the use of force.
    Everyone in this group just acted stupidly.

  16. Please don’t allow racism to overshadow an act that could have ended a person’s life(et alone his career). For any person to entertain a remark stated as justification for a brutal assault is ridiculous. Black, white, Hispanic , regardless, during the heat of a battle( game), many comments are made by multiple players. That is called competition! Football is not a sport played by gentle men but rather warriors battling in a contact environment. Garrett should be gone, this is not an isolated event but rather a pattern.

  17. Now the standard has gone from innocent until proven guilty to you must prove you never called him a name under skilled interrogation by a lawyer presumably known as Torquemada or Schiff.

    Rudolph doesn’t have to prove he didn’t call Garrett a rude name to justify Garrett’s correct suspension for clubbing Rudolph over the head. In fact, if I were Rudolph I would sure Garrett for defamation. But, I understand why that may not be a wise move with both being members of the same union.

  18. citizenstrange says:

    November 22, 2019 at 1:29 pm
    Mason Rudolph has probably been playing football since he was around 6-years-old. Is there even ONE instance when he has used a racial slur? EVER? EVEN ONCE? Or did he wait until a Thursday night game in his 2nd NFL season to use it for the FIRST TIME EVER on Myles Garrett?
    —————————————————–

    I don’t know the answer to this question, obviously. But since no one heard him use the word its useful to look at his character and relationships and his life outside of football for some clues. What we know is that his best friend and college roommate is black. That he seems to get along well with his teammates (most of whom are black). And that his black teammates closest to the fight all denied hearing the word. I don’t know Pouncey, but I just have a hunch that dude wouldn’t tolerate hearing that sort of thing from some dime a dozen backup QB.

    Add on to this that Garrett didn’t mention anything about this after it happened and it looks pretty suspicious.

  19. If you assume it happened then Garrett completely mismanaged the situation by telling no one about it after the game. Teammates, coaches, NFL officials, etc. That was a bad choice.

  20. When does calling someone a name give that someone the right to cave in a skull with a blunt object? What happened to “sticks and stones may break my bones, but WORDS will never hurt me”? It amazes me how minor inconsequential things offend people these days. Our country is in big trouble if these over-sensitive people are the future of our country.

  21. slur, knee, groin kick, whatever. Tony Dungy is right. This stuff happens, personally I do not believe Garrett for one second. He is the one who did what he did, and a man would accept the consequences, man up, move on. He has chosen pretty much the opposite path of this, which says much about him. Playing the victim by bringing race into it is the very definition of “weak sauce”. If Mason yelled a slur loud enough for Garrett to hear it, then so did other Steelers players. Also, if Garrett was so upset over being called this slur that he literally attempted to seriously injure the guy who said it, it would seem he would still have that lingering after the game and mentioned it. Oh, wait, he “took the high road” BS. It is time to move on, man up, learn how not to behave like a little boy.

  22. I can’t imagine Pouncey jumping so quickly and passionately to aid of Rudolph if he’d just dropped a N-bomb. Nope, the NFL saw thru Garrett’s delayed lame race card excuse…end of story.

  23. Wake up. Myles was very wrong and he was punished appropriately. He might not play in games next year too.

    The issue regardless of what was said is that Mason Rudolph was not punished appropriately for his part in Thursday’s debacle.

  24. “Should Rudolph have been suspended for his actions we saw on replay? Absolutely.”

    I don’t believe to date that any player has ever been suspended for trying to rip another player’s helmet or doing so. Typically its a fine which is what Rudolph got, so that’s consistent with previous punishments.

    And I think we need to be careful what we wish for. Far more players take actions like trying to knock another player’s helmet off than the grand total of 1 that tried to bean another over the head with it. There are usually a few incidents a year where things like this happen. A hefty fine should be the answer, not suspensions.

  25. Evidence? There’s visible evidence that the NFL poster boy Rudolph called Larry a B7tch after Rudolph was knocked down and no-one and I mean no-one has mentioned that. Why didn’t anyone control Rudolph?

  26. Basically what Tony Dungy said is right between the lines…sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.

  27. Even if he did use, you know claiming this won’t help. Just man up to the mistake and move on. This kind of reaction could lead to games in 2020. Take responsibility and don’t make excuses regardless of whether it happened or not.

  28. What a great idea! Every time a suspended player makes an accusation in an attempt to justify their egregious behavior, the NFL should pay to fly both players to Goodell’s kangaroo court where a paid investigator can waste everyone’s time asking questions. To call Garrett’s claim “evidence” is just silly. He is strongly incentivised to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars to make any claim he can possibly make to swing public opinion back in his favor. His agent probably came up with the idea. Playing the race card is a despicable thing to do but with Garrett, are we really surprised?

  29. What a great idea! Every time a suspended player makes an accusation in an attempt to justify their egregious behavior, the NFL should pay to fly both players to Goodell’s kangaroo court where a paid investigator can waste everyone’s time asking questions. To call Garrett’s claim “evidence” is just silly. He is strongly incentivised to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars to make any claim he can possibly make to swing public opinion back in his favor. His agent probably came up with the idea. Playing the race card is a despicable thing to do but with Garrett, are we really surprised?

    ——————————————————————————–

    Hundreds of thousands? I think you mean millions.

  30. Let’s remember that it wasn’t Garrett who made the accusation public. It was leaked to the press by ESPN who never got a direct quote from Garrett. Garrett made the accusation at his appeal hearing. A scenario in which Garrett withheld this until the hearing is entirely possible. Right after the game, he may have been told not to say anything about it by the Browns because of how explosive it would have been to say so then and he may have abided by their wishes. Maybe his agent thought this was the smart move as well. Maybe he knew that it doesn’t justify what he did anyway. Maybe he believed his accusation would remain private at the hearing. It certainly serves the NFL to uphold its indefinite suspension by letting this leak because it certainly makes Garrett look even more like the bad guy in this. Let’s remember this is a guy who refused to retaliate when he was punched in the face after a traffic accident. Something provoked him to snap at the end of that game.

  31. No audio to back it up, no teammates say they heard it, no teammates say that Garrett mentioned it, but sure, Garrett did say it in order to try and mitigate his suspension, for the first time, at the appeal a week later. I think Rudolph should demand the tapes and sue Garrett for slander.

  32. The other “evidence” is whether anyone else was in a position to hear but did not. The complete absence of those people is consistent with Garrett’s position. Seems like people are really afraid of this hot button issue so they run away from it.

  33. Did the league bring in Antonio Brown when he called Mayock a cracker. Did they bring both sides in and if Mayock would of used a weapon on Brown for saying that would that defend his actions. Would Brown be labeled a racist. That’s my issue w the race card being brought up in this instance. Nobody bats an eye if it’s racial slurs against whites I was on Garrett’s side until this and I thought it was messed up Rudolph wasn’t suspended any games cause he def instigated it bit to throw the race card out there to justify it is unreal.

  34. Garrett said something interesting yesterday. He said he didn’t know the process would be public, and thought it was private. I think he went in saying this for the first time because he wanted to alleviate the damage somehow, and he thought it would stay behind closed doors.

    Now that he has learned it’s public consumption, he has no choice but to perpetuate it. He probably lied, but the backlash he would face if he coped to that would compound the character hit he is already taking.

  35. There isn’t a single place on those fields that aren’t wired for sound including not only several players from both sides but most notably the QB’s. Wheres the audio? Everything is recorded in this day and age. Lets hear it! If it isn’t on there, ban him and whoever put him up to it permanently!

  36. The irony is the NFL is less believable than Garrett.

    That said, the argument still comes down to how long he’s punished for. Personally I don’t feel the NFL should be able to punish a player indefinitely. Define the penalty or kick them out of the league so they can move on.

  37. You know it was crazy when I saw it, as a black man I instantly thought there is only one thing someone could say to me that would possibly make me lose all sense of morality and become so violent, so I wasn’t shocked when it came out he claimed a racial slur had spurred him. No disrespect but a fight under those circumstances couldn’t really be a surprise.

  38. There were two Steelers linemen standing within easy ear shot of the whole thing, one black and one white. Did they corroborate Garrett’s statement of Rudolph’s?

    Yeah, I thought so.

  39. MG screwed up because he thought it was a private conversation and he could use the slur excuse to get his fine reduced. It’s pretty obvious, and you’re attempts to defend him are an insult to Rudolph.

  40. The problem is Garrett never mentioned it from the outset. He did so after he found out what his punishment was going to be. We’ve seen far more usage of false racist claims from players like him than we have seen accurate ones. It is time that anyone who claims racism to be immediately dismissed and have them sent back to a “Grow A Set” class where they find a way to not jump to acts of violence when they hear something they think is offensive. There is no right to be free from offense.

  41. So if there is ever video evidence just in a street corner I’m black ur white I say u called me the N word so because there is evidence of us talking w absolutely no sound whatsoever. Especially w all those ppl around no1 else heard it.

    A very dangerous game to play not calling Myles a liar so from this point forward anytime one white player is talking to one black player we must 100% of the time believe the. Black player.

    I hope whoever the pats are playing opposite team outs in their last special teamed claims Tom called him the N word no word heard it so do what kick Tom outta game suspense or fine Tom w no proof but one players word.

    That’s just a stupid and idiotic point of view. I hope my Raiders say every week teams best white player is using racial words as according to u no proof is needed to be guilty. Lol.

  42. If only Rudolph had grabbed and tried to remove Garrett’s helmet first, or shoved his cleats into Garrett’s privates..then Garrett would have an argument!

  43. I fully realize that in sports the “heat of the moment” is a real thing that athletes, when pushing themselves to the physical limit can become emotionally volatile. They will then say or do things that they would not ever do otherwise. Real punishment must be used as a consequence and deterrent to do as much as possible to keep that in check.

    But “sticks and stones” man. These guys are paid millions of dollars to play a sport. What is a bad word going to do to you? These guys want to be treated like men, act like men.

  44. If you’re going to use the standard of “Garrett said it happened” as “evidence” that it happened, then the fact that Rudolph denied it happened is evidence that it did not happen, and therefore, “evidence” that Garrett is lying.

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