The NFL's updated conduct policy is by no means a cure-all. But it is a step in the right direction. It clearly articulates consequences. It shows support for and provides resources to survivors.
However, while it's easy to lament to the failings of our sports fandoms in 2014, there's no denying that there was also a lot of good to come from the past year.
Black athletes know what needs to be done. All that is missing is the will to do it. Now is the time to dispel the stereotypes about black athletes.
Not a single "Romo hater" has a legitimate reason for their position in my opinion. Sure, you haven't won a Super Bowl, but I highly doubt than any other quarterback would have won a ring on those teams.
The Raiders played their best game this season by far. Despite a tumultuous year, Oakland regained their competitive edge and gave their fans something they've been wanting for since 2011: A victory over the 49ers in the Battle of the Bay.
It could be the case that the concussive damage NFL players suffer in games and in practices increases the risk that they will engage in domestic violence. Were that proven to a reasonable certainty, the NFL would bear the moral, and perhaps legal, responsibility for creating that menace.
While NFL insiders hype the Hoyer-Manziel duel, Colts assistant coach Rob Chudzinski brings the bad karma of Browns owner Jimmy Haslam's old front office into Sunday's clash at the Lakefront.
I have heard people predict that the NFL could be gone a decade from now. But they are quickly reminded that it is the most popular spectator sport, (as were the gladiators) and the networks won't part with all that money.
Looking back, one could admit that he bit off more than he could possibly chew. Nonetheless, the franchise hasn't been the biggest help either.
In the contemporary, "nothing matters but this game" NFL, spurred on by constant criticism in talk radio and social media, the slow development of a quarterback is not allowed. Win or be benched is the new mantra.
Signing Ray Rice at this time could be seen as condoning his misdeed. It would certainly attract an avalanche of media attention. A team could expect that the story line of its push for the playoffs would be dwarfed by Rice stories.
Cops have really hard jobs. That doesn't mean it's off limits ever to question the manner in which some of them fulfill their responsibilities or to raise serious concerns about the institutional racism that undeniably pervades our culture and inevitably affects how policing is carried out.
Consistency can be overrated, but if the public is inclined to crush the career of an athlete who beats his wife, it should also be willing to ignore Mailer's books and turn a blind eye to Picasso paintings.
Forgive my pessimism, but as long as football continues to attract these types of "You hit like a girl!" gorillas to teach the game to children, no amount of Heads Up football is going to make the sport safer.
Lurie, when asked at Philadelphia Magazine's Thinkfest conference, argued that football is not dangerous at the NFL level, despite the record $870 million settlement that the NFL agreed to pay former players.
The dramatic circumstances of the Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson cases raise the issue of which aspects of an athlete's private life should be subject to public awareness and judgment.