It's been a rough week for the NFL. The Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson situations dominated all of the news, along with other players who have gotten in trouble. And Roger Goodell today had a press conference that really didn't do anything to help his image. All of the discussion surrounding the league has been about the negatives.
But Colts wide receiver Reggie Wayne knows that's just a small percentage of the players. "You listen to what people say about it outside of the NFL, it's almost like they're stereotyping everybody," Reggie said on Friday. "They're putting everybody in the same boat, and so that's not fair. There are some great people in this locker room, whether it's husbands, or boyfriends, or fathers. Not everybody is doing all the negative stuff. The black eye the league is getting, and this is all in my opinion, is not fair that everybody's brought to that same category."
Reggie was also asked whether the recent events have caused anything to be emphasized more. "To be honest," Wayne said, "I don't think anybody has to say anything, just watch TV. Flip through the channels, you'll see it man. Just look what teams are doing to those people that are getting in trouble. You see somebody on the exempt list, deactivated. That's what they're doing, so what makes you think that you're going to be different? I think it's already understood. You do something like that, especially right now, we already know what's going to happen. Whatever the scenario is, either walk away or go have a Coke and a smile."
Quarterback Andrew Luck has mentioned before that Chuck Pagano has emphasized from the beginning of his time with the Colts to treat women and children with respect. Reggie Wayne also knows that the leadership of the team is a strong one.
"Obviously it's something that we wish to avoid," Reggie said today of the things going on in the NFL today. "We all know what's been transpiring the last couple of weeks and it's been kind of a black eye. I guess we'll listen to [Roger Goodell's] message and just pray that we all stay out of some kind of confrontation. The only thing I can do is continue to do my part here in this locker room and lead by an example, and hopefully guys just follow my lead."
We talked yesterday about how Reggie Wayne is a great leader, and he's continuing to show it. Obviously we know that any team can have problems, but with the leadership the Colts have in Chuck Pagano, Reggie Wayne, Andrew Luck, Cory Redding, Robert Mathis, Pat McAfee, Adam Vinatieri, Matt Hasselbeck, and others, you'd have a hard time finding a stronger locker room environment than the Colts have. Reggie wants to make sure that people know that just because the talk recently has been about the negative things, a lot of the players in the Colts' locker room, and locker rooms throughout the league, are doing things the right way. Unfortunately, the negatives often overshadows the positives, but the latter is much more prevalent than the former.