While doing the morning surf over a cup of coffee, just about every single major sports news outlet, local outlet, and blogger threw in their two cents about the Steelers releasing rookie running back Chris Rainey for his assault on his girlfriend on Thursday. To say the least, there’s been mixed reactions to his release. Some people think it’s the right message, other think it’s wrong, and other still think that while the right move for the team is rather hypocritical.
This post is from Hensley of ESPN. It’s pretty basic, but Hensley is part of Camp Good Decision. He feels that this sends a strong message to the other players and future players that this kind of behavior to women is unacceptable. The question that he nor anyone else really addresses is if Rainey was on a ‘one strike’ contract due to his previous conduct with the ladies while attending the University of Florida.
This post is from Andrea Hangst from the Bleacher Report. Hangst says that while ditching Rainey is the right thing to do, she says the Steelers (as well as the NFL) operate under a double standard. Trouble with the law? You’re out… unless you have star power. Angst uses examples of James Harrison, Alameda Ta’amu, and Ben Roethlisberger as ways the Steelers have contradicted themselves in disciplinary actions. While Hangst brings up decent points about those players staying on the team even though they had ‘issues’ she is clearly off base in mistaking Ta’amu as a ‘star’ and conveniently uses him (I think) as a tool for her argument.
She also conveniently forgets to include Santonio Holmes in the bunch. He was a star and an Super Bowl MVP just months prior to being cut by the Steelers. My sense is that the team asses a player much like they do in the draft – if they have good value and a chance to improve/reform, then they are worth keeping around. Maybe Holmes had no potential to improve whereas Ta’amu shows potential. There’s no doubt that it’s a slippery slope the Steelers are walking, but it’s far from as cut and dry as Hangst says with star power vs none.
Speaking of Ta’amu. It’s been a rough year for the 2012 draft class. Here’s an interesting post from Hensley that gives a quick breakdown of how things went this season for them. Not too great, and it really becomes a black mark on what is seemingly an awesome track record in the NFL draft.
And lastly, our own FanSided began speculation about Omar Khan leaving the Steelers for the NY Jets and their open GM position. They also think Khan could lure Cowher to New York due to their past relationship in Pittsburgh. While it’s plausible that Khan could leave the Steelers, which would be just another gash in what is quickly becoming a blood bath of personnel problems within the organization. Khan is amazing at negotiating contracts for the Steelers. He’s probably been single handedly responsible for keeping some big names in the ‘Burgh. It would be a huge blow to lose him. But Khan luring Cowher out of retirement? Meh. I still think Bill won’t be back for a few years.