Sean McDermott: Bills have a lot of work to do to figure Matt Araiza situation out

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Bills coach Sean McDermott says he doesn’t know what his team is going to do with rookie punter Matt Araiza, after a rape accusation against him last year became public this week.

The Bills benched Araiza for Friday night’s preseason finale, and McDermott said afterward that he doesn’t know what the team will do with Araiza going forward.

“It is a situation that is extremely serious,” McDermott said. “It’s just hard to go through, and it’s not a situation that I or we take lightly whatsoever. It’s very serious, I understand the sensitivity of the situation, and it’s clear we have work to do to continue to figure this thing out, and we’re going to do that.”

Asked when the Bills found out that Araiza had been accused of rape, McDermott refused to answer. Asked whether he expects Araiza to be on the 53-man roster, McDermott again refused to answer.

Asked why Araiza didn’t play in Friday’s preseason game, McDermott said, “It was my decision, and at the end of the day I didn’t think it was right.”

McDermott said he has been working hard at finding the right solution, and indicated that his focus on the Araiza situation has taken his focus away from the game.

“This is a game,” McDermott said. “There are other things that are more important.”

44 responses to “Sean McDermott: Bills have a lot of work to do to figure Matt Araiza situation out

  1. Seems like even the facts that aren’t up for debate are enough for an arrest. She was 17, he fed her drinks til she was blacking out, and then had sex with her. Is that not 3 crimes already?

  2. According to the lawsuit, Araiza has already admitted to the crime of having sex with a minor, so it will certainly be interesting to see what his side of the story is.

  3. If you listened to the whole interview you get the sense that Araiza either lied to them or withheld information. The Bills botched this and should cut him asap. It’s a privilege to play in this league. Not a right.

  4. They knew about his past, took a chance now the situation must be addressed. Let’s see what type of organization the Bills truly are. As for the validity of the accusation, no young woman wants to put herself and her family through this for a few dollars. These guys are not rich and she reported it the next day. Are there times where the accusation is false, sure but a majority are real.

  5. If the allegation has credibility, you gotta cut the guy. How hard is it to find a new punter, anyway?

  6. All signs point to the Bills having a great season. Hard to believe they will let a black cloud like this hover over the ream before week one. Just cut this kid. Its an easy call..

  7. Seriously, if he couldn’t punt the ball 80 yards this decision would have been made a month ago when they first became aware. He needs to go. If there’s a Reserve/Dumbass list put him on that, otherwise let him go.

  8. He has a different story then hers. We don’t know what happened. It doesn’t sound good, further investigation is needed. The NFL should be helping the Bills by talking to the police who did the investigation. He should be put on the Commisioner’s exempt list until this is resolved.

  9. See ya. Final cut down is this week and someone will release a decent punter. The Bills don’t need a guy like this on the team.

  10. Asked when the Bills found out that Araiza had been accused of rape, McDermott refused to answer…..

    Why won’t he say when they knew? To his credit, he actually sounds like he was blind sided by this and is just trying to determine what to do for the first time. However, I thought they did an extensive investigation into it, if so he should have already had a plan on what to do. Someone at the Bills isnt being honest about the situation.

    I will say this yet again, the Bills either knew about it before and didn’t care and thought it wouldn’t be an issue and are now in damage control mode OR they failed to do their due diligence and just found out and then gave some BS line about doing the investigation. Either way its a bad look, and the situation they are in is of their OWN DOING.

    They must really love this guy to keep him on the roster.

  11. Two notes:

    It’s too bad that any comments on this have noted that “he is only a punter”. Position and importance to the team should not matter. (I know that in the real world it does.)

    If he has been under a criminal investigation since last October and never told the Bills, that should be grounds for immediate dismissal with cause. I would not pay him any more guaranteed money. Let him sue for it.

  12. If the bills had prior knowledge of this then shame on them. Further shame for not just cutting the guy and resigning him to his fate.

  13. Stay classy, Buffalo. Cut him and move on with Josh Allen as the face of the franchise and don’t look back.

  14. Sean McDermott still had not figured out a kill-13-seconds game plan. Matt Araiza’s situation will take awhile.

  15. You’ll see his name on the FINAL cutdown list due by Tuesday. Easy-peezie, nice and easy. BTW Let’s give Barkley his due for stepping up and punting pretty good last night! He may end up sticking with the team with that type of versatility.

  16. What’s there to figure out?
    They cut Matt Haack after they knew the allegations about Araiza, but claim they didn’t know about them before they drafted him, which is questionable because he was the third punter taken in the draft despite his legendary leg in college.
    The only thing to figure out is if your franchise is as soulless as the Browns. So far it doesn’t look good for the Bills…

  17. I agree with you, malcomreynolds, the more they wait, the more it stinks. They should cut him ASAP and let the Browns continue to be the Browns.

  18. To all the people saying “he’s just a punter”:

    If it was the quarterback being accused of rape, why would your attitude be any different?

  19. is 17 at or above the age of consent where it happened? Was she a willing partner until she realized he was an NFL player? Stupid of him to do anything with a young girl, but considering he is probably only a few years older than her I am not so sure he deserves to have his NFL career ruined over this.

  20. To all the people saying “he’s just a punter”:

    If it was the quarterback being accused of rape, why would your attitude be any different?

    ——————————-

    I honestly don’t understand it either. Look at Jameis Winston. He’s not even a good QB, yet he still plays in this league without anyone blinking an eye, despite a very similar situation.

  21. The Bills will do the right thing on this; I don’t have too much doubt on that.

    The internet jury is something that I’ll never get used to in this age of technology. Literally no one here knows the full truth yet, but it’s not stopping a shameless rush to judgment.

    The truth will come out on this one, and that’s what the Bills need to guide their actions.

  22. It’s time for the Bills to send Araiza home and face his accuser. Based on home long it takes for these proceedings to finalize, Araiza is not playing this year. And if found guilty, he will never play in the NFL.

  23. billsrthefuture says:
    August 27, 2022 at 10:27 am
    The Bills will do the right thing on this; I don’t have too much doubt on that.

    The internet jury is something that I’ll never get used to in this age of technology. Literally no one here knows the full truth yet, but it’s not stopping a shameless rush to judgment.

    The truth will come out on this one, and that’s what the Bills need to guide their actions.
    _____________

    The truth is already out. It is undisputed that Araiza had sex with a 17 year old after he and his friends plied her with drinks.

    There is no rush to judgement here. Technology did not cause and has nothing to do with Araiza’s conduct.

  24. Apparently, other teams, unlike the Bills, did their research about Araiza before drafting him.
    They have no one but themselves to blame for the attention that having a rapist on their roster is bringing them.
    Araiza has never denied raping the girl, he only denies using force.

  25. georgiavol91 says:
    August 27, 2022 at 11:05 am
    Duke Lacrosse ring a bell to any of you judge/jury types?

    54Rate This

    ——————

    Umm, he already admitted he had sex with the underage girl. That’s statutory rape.

    You can stop trying to spin it. You defenders of Watson and now this kid, are very disturbed people.

    The Duke Lacrosee thing smelled like a framejob from the get go based on the details. This one, does not.

    She reported it the very next day. This has nothing to do with money.

  26. ggreen657 says:
    August 27, 2022 at 9:21 am
    Guilty until proven innocent. Welcome to the USA, circa 2022.
    —————————————————-
    This is nothing new, we thought OJ was guilty even after he was found innocent.
    Americans like to think for themselves.

  27. What is there to figure out? Does any team need a guy with this hanging over him? He already admitted to having sex with her. Statutory rape at the very least. They should cut him before it becomes the Cleveland Browns 2.0.

  28. “McDermott said he has been working hard at finding the right solution…”

    McDermott’s got a lotta guts, standing in front of a room and speaking in earnest tones about his desire to “get this right.” In this situation, to get to this point, a team has to make a lot of oversights.

    I’d respect him more if he took ownership of the situation as it has been handled up to now before offering platitudes about how hard he “has been” working on this.

  29. edk53 says: “If he has been under a criminal investigation since last October and never told the Bills, that should be grounds for immediate dismissal with cause.”
    ——————-

    Don’t think he knew. Draft happened back in April, but Araiza only just hired his lawyer 6 weeks ago when the story was published in the LA times.

  30. Was there police and/or criminal legal system involvement? If so, what was/were the outcome(s)?

  31. From what is known, she did the right thing and went to the police the next day. One must assume the police interviewed the 3 accused. No charges were filed. Itcseems like the Bills need to contact the police department and get information regarding why no charges were filed.

    This is a difficult case because the girls actions, by going to the police right away, make her credible. On the other hand, why were no criminal charges pressed. I am old enough to still believe you need to treat a person as innocent until proved otherwise. Keep the punter unless you find information that makes you believe there is a probability he committed the crime. This standard should apply to punters and QBs.

  32. I warned about the Pegulas being vile, underhanded people.

    McDermott is a disgrace. The information has been available to any organization before the draft.

  33. Let the situation play out before you make your judgment, if it’s true he did what he did then cut him and banned him from the league. If its proven he didn’t do it then everyone will look like idiots for deeming him guilty before proven innocent. Wait under things are proven right and this domestic end up as another money grab ordeal.

  34. The poster who called the Pegulas “vile” gloats about injuries to other teams when they happen.

    Just an FYI.

  35. He could play for Cleveland – they’ll take anyone. It’s not like his behavior will rub anyone the wrong way at the Browns

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