Originally Posted by Chip R
The difference comparing this incident to Ryan Freel's is that this was the 9th arrest of a Bengal in a little over a year. How many Reds have been arrested besides Freel? Only other one I can think of is Shackelford. If a Bengal had been arrested a year ago and none others since then, it wouldn't be that big of a deal. It'd be an isolated incident. It's not Joseph's fault 8 other teammates were arrested and what Joseph did was not a big deal. However, Joseph was the 9th Bengal arrested. Doesn't matter what for, he was arrested. And that could be the straw that breaks the camel's back. And that is why a lot of people feel he should be made an example of. If 8 Reds had been arrested for one thing or another before Freel had, then you might have had people calling for his release.
It doesn't matter what kind of a guy Joseph is. This could be the first time he's ever touched weed. He could be a regular church goer and give 10% of his salary to charity and be the best player on the Bengals. But none of that matters when you are the 9th guy to get arrested. The NFL commissioner himself came in and talked to the Bengals and nothing has changed. Marvin himself said he was going to get tough with the next person who did this and nothing changed. If he doesn't get tough he's going to be a laughingstock with the players. He's going to look soft and the media will call him a liar. He's got bigger battles to fight than this but he's got to deal with it now.
So hypothetically, if Freel, Shackelford, Brandon Phillips, Denorfia, and Encarnacion all run afoul of the law to varying degrees, then after the season is over Homer Bailey gets picked up for a minor misdemeanor, you're going to crack down by releasing Bailey. I don't think so. They can release Thurman because from what it sounds like, he's a lost cause. They could release Henry if he gets in trouble again because he's causing more of a distraction than he's worth (and he takes plays off). But Joseph had a very promising rookie season. You don't unload talent like that, especially when you'll probably need to unload James and O'Neal at some point. Can you suspend him? Sure. But who's going to remember or care next September when the suspension is effective? Really, at this point in the off-season, what can Marvin Lewis do? Take away his PS3?
Besides, I think when Marvin was talking about being more of a disciplinarian, I think he was specifically referring to issues that went on behind the scenes.