The NFL is our country’s most-watched reality show.
It has captivated us, transfixed us as sports fans and, for the most part, taken ownership of one full day each week as we can’t look away on Sundays.READ MORE: Developer Turning Building Across From PPG Paints Arena Into Apartments
It’s also so damn puzzling sometimes, so bereft of logic and common sense that it leaves you scratching your head how an entity this sizeable can get something so simple, so wrong.
Such an example came down on Wednesday afternoon at the Steelers South Side facility when defensive back William Gay got one of those FedEx packages from the league office in New York City.
When those make their way into the locker of a player, it isn’t Roger Goodell and his band of merry football men wishing any holiday cheer.
Nope, it’s generally a fine. A you-pay-us-because-we-think-you-did-something-wrong proposition that is cut and dried.
It was this time.
In the sum of $5,797 — the requisite amount for the first violation of the NFL uniform code.
Did Gay have his jersey incessantly untucked during play this past weekend against the Chiefs? No.
Did Gay have something not above board written on his wrist tape or eye black? Nope.
Did Gay insist on wearing an article of clothing with a non-sanctioned logo bold and gaudy for everyone to see? Uh, no.
William Gay wore purple shoes.
Purple is a color that signifies domestic violence awareness.
He wore them because his mother was murdered.
When he was 7, by a bullet.
The bullet was fired by William Gay’s stepfather, who then killed himself.READ MORE: Pittsburgh Weather: Cold Tuesday Temperatures
And get this: October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Apparently William Gay is much more aware on how to make people aware of a real problem than the NFL is self-aware of anything.
Imagine that, imagine being the person for a moment who had to sit in that haughty NFL office and type up a letter to a man who had his mother felled (for good) by a bullet when he was 7 and inform him he was fined for honoring her and trying to prevent something similar happening to someone else.
How incredibly barren of any rationality.
Believe me, I understand collective bargaining agreements probably better than most people and also know the slippery slope both sides can get in when any wiggle room is offered on even the minutest detail that had been agreed upon.
But what would be the harm here for logic to supersede all?
Who would have complained?
Would it lead to a rash of players trying to champion causes? I don’t think so.
We’re talking about someone’s dead mother who was a victim of domestic abuse, not someone trying to publicly honor the memory of a person mowed down in a gangland, drug-deal-gone-bad situation.
Again, let’s apply some common sense to all this. William Gay’s mom got killed and he’s trying to save others from realizing the same fate.
When dolling out the fines, and before shipping out those FedEx packages, the NFL should have asked itself a simple question: What’s worse for their image; a man such as William Gay wearing an improper Pittsburgh Steelers uniform or a “man” such as Greg Hardy wearing a proper Dallas Cowboys uniform.
In his heart of hearts, deep down inside, Goodell knows the answer.
But it’s just a shame he can’t apply any logic here.MORE NEWS: Medical Experts Continuing To Learn More About Omicron Variant Of COVID-19