“Y’all not all going to do the right stuff, I got to teach y’all how to get around all this stuff, too. If you going to have a crew, one of those fools got to know he’s going to jail. We’ll get him out. If you going to have a crew, make sure they understand can’t nothing happen to you. Your name can’t be in lights, under no circumstances…In case y’all not going to decide to do the right thing, if y’all got a crew, you got to have a fall guy in the crew.”
—NFL Hall of Famer Chris Carter, speaking to first year NFL players in a 2014 league-sponsored rookie symposium to help them “adapt to professional football.” His advice was then echoed by fellow Hall of Famer Warren Sapp.
That the NFL’s retired role models and immortals were–Have been? Still are?—giving out such toxic and unethical “wisdom” under the league’s auspices went unnoticed until a recently retired player,the 49ers’ Chris Borland who quit after just one season because he feared brain damage, referenced Carter’s speech on ESPN. Not only did the NFL’s speakers instruct its rookies to make sure they have a designated “fall guy” if they decide to break the law, it had Carter’s speech on its website all this time.
Now it’s all about damage control, of course. ESPN, which currently employs this ethics-challenged “sportsman” as an analyst, said in a statement…
“We completely disagree with Cris’s remarks and we have made that extremely clear to him. Those views were entirely his own and do not reflect our company’s point of view in any way.”
Carter’s comments do, however,reflect the prevailing culture of the NFL, which ESPN is so deeply in bed with that it can’t reach the pillow.
“This was an unfortunate and inappropriate comment made by Cris Carter during the 2014 NFC rookie symposium. The comment was not representative of the message of the symposium or any other league program. The league’s player engagement staff immediately expressed concern about the comment to Cris. The comment was not repeated in the 2014 AFC session or this year’s symposium.”
‘Buuuuut we decided to leave the video up on our website anyway, since it does accurately describe the completely corrupt and ethics-free culture of professional football, as anyone who paid attention to the last twelve months knows, because nobody in our offices knows good ethics from a corndog, and because we know our faithful fans don’t care if our players cheat, or slug their girlfriends, or beat their children with sticks, or take illegal drugs, or end up mentally crippled by the time they are 50. They just want to drink beer and eat chicken wings on Sunday afternoons, see men crush each other, drool at the cheerleaders and see their teams make the play-offs.”
Carter, of course, has no idea why he said those things, and just suddenly realized what was wrong a year later:
“Seeing that video has made me realize how wrong I was. I was brought there to educate young people and instead I gave them very bad advice. Every person should take responsibility for his own actions. I’m sorry and I truly regret what I said that day.”
Wait…no fall guy, Chris?
Just when you think you have reached the scummy bottom of the NFL’s ethical depravity, a new and darker pit yawns.