According to one poll, the majority of NFL fans aren’t on board with their favorite team drafting a player who has physically abused a woman.
“A Marist poll conducted for HBO’s Real Sports found that the vast majority of fans — 87 percent — say that they would oppose their favorite NFL team drafting a top college prospect with a history of physical violence against women,” writes Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk.
Seems reasonable enough. But can we believe that same 87 percent won’t embrace a player like Joe Mixon if he is drafted and starts to take the NFL by storm?
Opinions are widely split about where Mixon might land in the draft. Some think he’s going to be undraftable because of the video that showed him decking a female student. Others say he won’t make it out of the second round.
Frank Clark is another recent example of a player who came into the league with some serious red flags involving an incident with a woman at a hotel during his tenure at Michigan. In the end, Clark avoided any legal actions because the prosecution didn’t pursue charges. But the police that covered the case strongly disagreed with that result (details here).
Clark ended up being drafted by the Seattle Seahawks in the second round back in 2015, and he is cheered by Seahawks fans on a regular basis as he chases down quarterbacks.
Chances are, if Mixon — a guy who racked up 2,921 yards and 26 touchdowns the past two seasons for the Sooners — ends up making big plays for his team on game days, the 87 percent opposed to him now will be cheering for him soon enough.
If he stinks, then the 87 percent who are now opposed can continue to stay opposed, but let’s not kid ourselves about any of this, folks.