The NFL has decided to inform all the teams of this positive policy change for the Scouting Combine via a memo from the NFL’s executive vice president of football operations Troy Vincent.
Lindsay H. Jones of USA Today went in detail about it:
“The NFL will no longer allow players with convictions for domestic violence, sexual assault or weapons offenses to attend the annual scouting combine in Indianapolis. Invited prospects would be barred from ‘any league-related event’ if a background check turns up a felony or misdemeanor conviction. Players that refuse to submit to a background check will also be uninvited.”
Obviously, those players would not be allowed to the draft.
Jones went on to say that the ex Michigan Wolverines linebacker and Seattle Seahawks second-round pick Frank Clark wouldn’t have been allowed to the 2015 draft if the rulehad been in tact, saying:
“Clark pleaded guilty to a lesser charge after an arrest for a domestic violence incident.”
To speak of the upcoming combine and draft, TCU quarterback Trevone Boykin could be affected since he was charged with a felony assault of a police officer and suspended for his team’s Alamo Bowl showdown against Oregon.
If it is decided that Boykin is banned, he could still impress NFL teams by attending other private work outs, pro days, and regional combines. Vincent also went on to explain how important the values of players are:
“It is important for us to remain strongly committed to league values as we demonstrate to our fans, future players, coaches, general managers, and others who support our game that character matters.”
The NFL and team players have had a bunch of domestic violence and sexual harassments suits in the past. The most recent ones would be Ray Rice back in 2014 hitting his then-fiancee in an elevator, and lots of people weren’t too happy about how the NFL and commissioner Roger Goodell handled the situation.
Also, before the 2015 NFL season, the Cowboys signed Greg Hardy, and it was controversial because in May of 2015 he was arrested and charged with assaulting and threatening to kill his ex-girlfriend, Nicole Holder. A North Carolina judge found Hardy guilty on July 15. The verdict wasn’t assigned when Hardy requested a jury trial.
All charges were then dropped on February 9th because Holder refused to cooperate with the district attorney’s office after receiving a financial settlement from Hardy. Smh.. The NFL later changed Hardy’s suspension from 10 games to only 4!
The combine change isn’t the only thing the NFL is doing to fix it’s image though. They also created a No More campaign, via NoMore.org:
Shortly after, in an expansion of an ongoing partnership between No More and the National Football League, the NFL began airing the original No More celebrity PSAs during football broadcasts and in stadiums during games. Then came a groundbreaking opportunity involve players in sharing this critical message of standing up and speaking out to say No More to domestic violence and sexual assault.
Nearly two dozen current and former NFL players stepped up to support the cause in a new series of public service announcements.
The NFL also showed an anti-domestic-violence ad during both last and this year’s Super Bowl. Let’s hope this actually makes a difference and isn’t just in place for show.