I can understand why the NY media will persist. They'll try to elevate their beloved Jets by creating as many distractions as possible for the Goblin's chief rival in the AFC. But...what's the excuse for the local writers? Can't they find anything else to write about? After they did a hatchet job on ex-Patriot/alleged badboy Randy Moss, for an assault that he didn't commit...and railroaded the Patriots and their Hall of Fame coach with the bogus and overblown spygate allegations...you would think that they learned something. But...
Here's such a negative article written by a local writer for whom I've had great respect for over the years...Jim Donaldson of the Providence Journal. In it, he viciously attacks Haynesworth for his past, and Wilfolk for "not coming clean" about allegations that he took money ten years ago, while playing ball at the University of Miami. My comments are added, in bold black:
Jim Donaldson: Wilfork should come clean, yes, but he’s no Haynesworth01:00 AM EDT on Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Vince Wilfork has no comment on the scandal involving his alma mater, the University of Miami – an extremely embarrassing, and highly damaging, tale of greed and sleaze in which the star nose tackle’s name has been prominently mentioned.
RESPONSE: Can you blame him? What does Vince have to gain by embroiling himself in this mess by commenting on it? What self-respecting lawyer would advise his client to do anything else?
But at least Wilfork has said he’ll have no comment.
That’s more than his fellow Patriots defensive lineman, Albert Haynesworth, had to say Monday after leaving the courthouse in Washington, D.C., where he pleaded no contest to a charge of misdemeanor simple assault.
By doing so, Haynesworth avoided a trial that had been scheduled to begin Tuesday on a charge of misdemeanor sexual abuse resulting from a waitress’ charge that he slid his credit card into her dress and fondled her breast.
RESPONSE: Allegedly. The State dropped a more serious charge to plead Haynesworth out to this...and further agreed to let him plead no contest. Considering that a lawsuit is out there regarding this matter, this is a major concession. Haynesworth's no contest plea can't be used against him as evidence of wrong doing in the civil suit. To avoid a highly publicized and highly distracting trial...what lawyer would have advised Haynesworth not to take this plea offer?
This would be the same Albert Haynesworth who earlier this year reached a settlement in the aftermath of a road rage incident.
The same Albert Haynesworth who last season was suspended for the final four games for “conduct detrimental” to the team, according to coach Mike Shanahan, including “repeatedly refusing to cooperate with the coaching staff over an extended period of time.”
The same Albert Haynesworth who, while with the Tennessee Titans, was thrown out of a game against the Cowboys for stomping on the bare head of Dallas center Andre Gurode, who was lying defenseless on the field. The shameful incident resulted in Haynesworth being suspended without pay for five games.
RESPONSE: All true. But...all in the past...and Haynesworth was punished for each of these incidents. But, did he shoot kill anybody... or go to prison, or kill any animals, the way the NFL's new poster boy in Philadelphia did? Remember the Ron Mexico fiasco? Yet, Michael Vick was given a clean slate in Philadelphia...and, thus far, has made the most of it. Why can't Haynesworth be extended the same courtesy by the local media?
This is the same Albert Haynesworth the Patriots are getting — not a “new” Albert Haynesworth, as he would have New England fans believe.
“I’m leaving all that stuff back in Washington,” Haynesworth said earlier this month, when he deigned to speak with media in New England.
Haynesworth was back in Washington on Monday, but declined to speak with the media as he left the courthouse. He had his lawyer, A. Scott Bolden, do the talking, instead.
RESPONSE: Again...in light of all the negative press, can you blame him? Didn't he hire a lawyer to represent him? So...what's wrong with the lawyer speaking for him?
“Mr. Haynesworth is very pleased,” said Bolden, “to have this over … and move on with his life, get back to New England and get back to doing what he does best, and that’s play professional football. This was a difficult time for him, his family, and others connected to him.”
Was there some reason we couldn’t hear those words from Haynesworth’s mouth, instead of from his hired mouthpiece?
RESPONSE: Yes. A football player is no match for a bunch of jackyls in the media.
As for “a difficult time,” it would be putting it mildly to say that’s what Haynesworth gave the Redskins, who gave him an NFL-record $41 million in guaranteed money to come to Washington from Tennessee in 2009.
Haynesworth certainly didn’t give the ’Skins much in the way of performance – or even effort.
RESPONSE: So what? That's between him and the 'Skins. Let's see what he does with a fresh start, away from the dingy house of losers in Washington.
That could never be said of Wilfork, who came to the Patriots as a first-round draft pick out of “the U” in 2004.
A three-time Pro Bowl selection, Wilfork has been a team leader in New England, as well as being actively involved in community affairs, having been honored by Children’s Hospital Boston in recognition of his efforts on behalf of the hospital’s patients and their families. He and his wife, Bianca, annually host a Draft Day fundraiser for the Diabetes Research Institute. While Wilfork was playing for the ’Canes, his father died of diabetes.
All of which makes it disappointing that Wilfork — who has been a stand-up guy with the Patriots — hasn’t been more forthcoming regarding what took place, and what he may have taken from run-amok booster and convicted felon Nevin Shapiro during his days at Miami.
RESPONSE: How does Vince wanting to stay out of the Miami mess lessen what he's done in his time in New England? He's being asked to respond to allegations of something that took place ten years ago. He's be an idiot to voluntary involve himself in that. Would you advise your son to "come clean", Jim...or to say, "no comment"?
“I’m done with that situation,” he said last week in the lockerroom at Gillette Stadium. “I’m going to move forward.”
Before moving forward, Wilfork should look backward.
RESPONSE: Why? This whole mess has come about based on the sole allegations of a convicted felon...a known con man, and thief. Again, would you advise your own son to "look back", Jim?
He hasn’t denied any of Shapiro’s allegations. There has been no outcry of indignation or outrage by Wilfork. Neither has there been any admission of guilt.
Perhaps, as Haynesworth did this week, he prefers to plead “no contest.”
Spare me, please, the “everybody was doing it” excuse, which is a particular favorite here in Rhode Island, and is a partial explanation for why this state finds itself in such a sorry state.
RESPONSE: Excuse me, Jim. The problem for the sorry financial state RI finds itself in is due to years of unbridled, corrupt big government, and out of control unions. To somehow try to equate Vince's unwillingness to drag himself into an alleged scandal that took place a decade ago...or Haynesworth choosing to let his lawyer do his job by representing his interests, is ridiculous.
If Wilfork did, indeed, take 50 large — and perhaps other illegal (at least in the eyes of the NCAA) benefits — from Shapiro, let’s not pretend he didn’t know it was wrong.
In which case, he should admit it, apologize for it, do his best to help the NCAA sort out the situation and determine an appropriate penalty for a university that clearly failed to exercise “institutional control.”
RESPONSE: Seems to me that the failure to exercise institutional control was the main problem, which should be addressed...in all universities. Again...why should Wilfolk choose to embroil himself in this mess? Would you so advise your son?
He should come clean regarding what he knows about what clearly was a very dirty program at Miami.
Only then will it be time to “move forward.”
RESPONSE: I totally agree and understand his stance. Why can't you? Why must you take this opportunity to criticize, based on unsubstantiated allegations...and when you would never advise your own son to "come clean".
Despite what went on in Coral Gables, there appears to be little reason in New England to worry about Wilfork.
If only the same could be said for Haynesworth, who was a problem in Tennessee, an even bigger problem in Washington, and could be more of the same with the Patriots.
RESPONSE: So...you didn't like the signing because of his past. Why can't you give this man the opportunity for a clean slate? If he messes up, then criticize and condemn. Michael Vick is making the most of his opportunity. If given a fair shake, maybe Albert Haynesworth can, too.
A most unfortunate and disappointing article for the usually fair and competent Jim Donaldson.