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.