NFL PM: Giants, NFL Face Difficult Situation With Josh Brown


The New York Giants probably wish their kicker was anonymous, like most kickers in the NFL.  Even if we were talking about his misses, the team would most certainly prefer that.

Instead, the ugly issue of domestic violence is back on the lips of those speaking about the USA’s most popular sports league, even if it’s far from an epidemic.

The NFL took a bullish stance once former Baltimore Ravens’ running back Ray Rice’s unfortunate video of him knocking out his wife came to light.  His two-game suspension became an indefinite one, and Rice is yet to suit up in the league, and he most likely never will again.

Not because the NFL is so anti-domestic violence, because Rice had a poor 2013 season and teams don’t want to take the public relations hit if a player can’t help them win on the field.

So why would the Giants entertain having kicker Josh Brown on the roster?

“Based on the facts and circumstances we were aware of at that time, we were comfortable with our decision to re-sign him,” Giants co-owner John Mara said in August. “Nothing has happened in the meantime to make us question that decision.”

Like in the Rice situation, the team must not have gone very far out of their way to investigate the issue.

Brown admitted to making a singular, individual mistake.

“I have physically, mentally, emotionally and verbally been a repulsive man,” Brown wrote in one of his journal entries. “I have abused my wife.”

His disgusting verbal entries went on.

“I have been a liar for most of my life,” he wrote. “I made selfish decisions to use and abuse women starting at the age of 7 to fill this void. I objectified women and never really worried about the pain and hurt I caused them. My ability to connect emotionally to other people was zero. My empathy levels were zero.

“Because I never handled these underlying issues I became an abuser and hurt Molly physically, emotionally and verbally. I viewed myself as God basically and she was my slave.”

How much actual investigation did the Giants do to not know that they had this kind of monster on their roster?

Make no mistake, Brown doesn’t rush the passer like Olivier Vernon, catch touchdown passes in traffic like Odell Beckham or stand in the face of pressure and deliver the football like Eli Manning.  He just kicks the ball.  Of course it is a difficult, often pressure packed job, but there are a number of guys on the street that can do it without the distraction that Brown causes.

For a team that has a squeaky clean reputation like New York to not only employ, but to stand behind this animal is truly inexcusable.

Sources tell us that Brown will not be accompanying the team on their trip to London to take on the Los Angeles Rams.  That’s a start, but if he ever kicks another football professionally it will spit in the face of all that the league is supposed to stand for.

Basically, it makes all of the pink cleats and wristbands worn in October for Breast Cancer Awareness seem disingenuous at the very least.

We rarely call for others to lose their jobs.  Losing one’s job is a traumatic event.  In this situation, it’s more than deserved as playing in the NFL is a privilege, far from a right.  If the league really wants to rid it’s reputation of catering to horrible people because they have rare talents, making this move to remove a pretty good, but not great kicker is an easy one.

About Charlie Bernstein

Charlie Bernstein

Charlie Bernstein is the managing football editor for Football Insiders and has covered the NFL for over a decade.  Charlie has hosted drive time radio for NBC and ESPN affiliates in different markets around the country, along with being an NFL correspondent for ESPN Radio and WFAN.  He has been featured on the NFL Network as well as Sirius/XM NFL Radio and has been published on Fox Sports, Sports Illustrated, ESPN as well as numerous other publications.