A former NFL executive has confirmed what millions of have speculated for years: there has been a lot more abuse among players than we knew about.
Chicago Bears former manager Jerry Angelo told USA Today that the NFL has covered up literally “hundreds and hundreds” of instances of domestic violence over the years. “I made a mistake,” he stated. “I was human. I was part of it. I’m not proud of it.”
Serving with Bear from October 2001 to 2011, Jerry said that his reaction to news that any of his players had assaulted a significant other pretty much embodied a walk-it-off attitude. After a superficial check in to find out if everyone involved was “ok” Jerry said, “We’d just move on. We’d move on.”
It’s been three years since Jerry has had to cover anything up, but Ray Rice’s domestic violence scandal has blown the lid on any cover about NFL policy pertaining to abuse. The public has been keeping a very close eye on the league and calling them out for the flimsy punishment it initially leveled against Ray. Looking back, Jerry believes that he and his team could have done more to hold ballers accountable for their actions instead of turning a blind eye.
“We knew it was wrong,” Jerry said. “For whatever reason, it just kind of got glossed over. I’m no psychiatrist, so I can’t really get into what that part of it is. I’m just telling you how I was. I’ve got to look at myself first. And I was part of that, but I didn’t stand alone.”
The corporate division of the Bears’ organization has chosen to play dumb about Jerry’s accusations in a statement released today, declaring, “We were surprised by Jerry’s comments and do not know what he is referring to.”
The Bears’ former defensive tackle Tank Johnson backed up Jerry’s statements, though. More than that he personally confirmed knowing about cases of domestic violence went completely unpunished.
“I think that 95 percent of situations or issues that ballclubs face, of course they try to handle them internally and see if they can come up with a resolution,” Tank told USA Today. “We’re talking about billion-dollar organizations, and maybe there’s a little bravado there, a little ego to say that we can handle this internally.”