CBS’s James Brown: “You are role models”

NEWS, NOTES & QUOTES FROM CBS SPORTS’ “THE NFL TODAY” WITH

JAMES BROWN, DAN MARINO, SHANNON SHARPE, BILL COWHER AND

BOOMER ESIASON FOR WEEK 14 ON DECEMEBER 7

JB to NFL Players: “You are role models whether you want to be or not.”

JAMES BROWN commentary on Plaxico Burress situation: The Plaxico Burress episode is the latest in a series of stories about a handful of NFL players who have made unbelievably poor choices, from the mistreatment of women, repeated violations of the law, substance abuse and now illegally carrying a loaded weapon. I believe in second chances, heaven knows we’ve all, myself included, have made plenty of mistakes. But here’s where the rubber hits the road.  If one is a repeat offender, showing no remorse or desire to change, then it’s incumbent upon the team itself to take responsibility and move on.  As the NFL personal conduct policy states, “Illegal or irresponsible conduct does more than simply tarnish the offender.  It puts innocent people at risk and sullies the reputation of others involved in the game.”  Now the overwhelming majority of players in the League are good people. And you know on this notion of being role models, you are role models whether you want to be or not. It comes with the territory.  The only choice you have is what kind of role model you choose to be.

►QUICK HITS

(On impact of not having Plaxico Burress in Giants lineup)

BOOMER ESIASON: (To Bill Cowher) Did you win the Super Bowl with Plaxico Burress when he was on your team? No.  You actually let him go the year before. That’s right where the Giants find themselves, no Plaxico Burress, no Jeremy Shockey, no Tiki Barber, no Michael Strahan, no Osi Umenyiora – no big problem.  There is no way in the world that Eli Manning is going to allow this team to lose this ballgame today, let alone the next few games.  It’s all about the substance of this football team…This team is resilient.

►FOOTBALL FACE-OFF

(On whether players should be able to play without punishment or be suspended for using banned diuretics)

BILL COWHER: They should be suspended because it’s clearly stated in a letter that is read to the team as they get into training camp.  Every coach does it. If you’re going to take a diuretic, make sure it is approved. This letter, as you can see it (over a copy of the letter shown), is given, the coach reads it to them.  You are responsible for what you put into your body.  It’s a no tolerance rule. I believe, as far as that information I got, they should be suspended.

SHANNON SHARPE: The NFL hides behind this was not collective bargained – we don’t have to tell you.  When do you need a collective bargaining agreement to use common sense just to do the right thing?  If the NFL had knowledge that this specific substance, this specific supplement, had a banned substance, why not go to the basis of your foundation, which are the players of the National Football League, and tell them, if you are taking this, cease immediately.  Why not just do the right thing?  Someone use some common sense.  I know I don’t have to, but I’m going to because it’s the players and they represent the National Football League.

COWHER: If you’re going to take a diuretic, get it approved.  That seems pretty clear to me.  They took a diuretic and didn’t get it approved.  It seems very clear-cut.  They violated the rule.

► “INSIDE THE GAME” WITH CHARLEY CASSERLY

(On Giants Plaxico Burress)

CASSERLY: I talked to the NFLPA yesterday, and they told me they are going to file a grievance on behalf of Plaxico Burress because they feel the Giants’ discipline is too severe, including the four-game suspension. On Friday I talked with the Giants and asked them, what is Burress’s future with your team?  They said they have not made that decision yet because they don’t have to.  They’re going to wait and see what happens in the courts, and then see what kind of attitude change Burress has in the off-season.  As far as he NFL goes, don’t look for them to invoke any discipline on Burress just yet.  They will also wait until the court system plays this out.

► PLAYOFF PICTURE

(On AFC East race)

COWHER: It comes down to Week 17 – the match-up with the Miami Dolphins going up to the New York Jets. It comes down to that one game – (the) winner wins the AFC East. I pick the New York Jets.

(On AFC Wild Card teams)

COWHER: I have Baltimore going in as wild card and I have Indianapolis.  The most dangerous team to play in the AFC?  The Denver Broncos. The quarterback, they’re better on the road than they are at home.  (Denver is) the most dangerous team in the AFC.

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