Welcome Evan Reller for this guest post
On Saturday night, Colts defensive end Jerry Hughes was arrested for public intoxication in Texas. The question is whether or not this is a serious issue that should have Colts fans worried about his character.
I am inclined to give Jerry Hughes the benefit of the doubt. He was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Hughes was arrested on suspicion of public intoxication. He was also released a few hours later. Without the incident report, it is difficult to say what really happened. Technically being over the legal limit and standing outside a bar waiting for a cab is public intoxication.
Hell, everyone walking around on an average Friday or Saturday in Bloomington at 2 AM could be arrested for public intoxication.
This isn’t Hines Ward getting behind the wheel of a car, or Cedric Benson beating up a family member, or Kenny Britt pulling another, well, Kenny Britt.
There have been several minor arrests with the Colts in months. Javarris James’ charge is the most disturbing for the Colts, but even that one strikes me as a case of “driving while black.” He was pulled over in Fort Meyers, Florida for having too deep of a tint on his car windows. I know he is guilty of possession of marijuana, but the circumstances that led to his arrest are suspect.
I don’t think the recent rash of arrests has anything to do with coaching or the quality of character on the Colts currently. Every time one of these players has been picked up, its been a minor incident where no harm was done to anyone. In addition, they have all been essentially no name players. These are all isolated incidents that are easy to deal with. This team doesn’t have repeat offenders.
According to USA Today, the Bengals lead the league in arrests since 2000 with 35. They have overtaken the Vikings, 33, and well ahead of the Titans and Broncos at 30. The Colts don’t crack the top five.
Since 2000, 22 Colts players have been arrested. 14 of those arrests happened under Tony Dungy. Seven arrests of Colts players have happened on Jim Caldwell’s watch. Two of those during the lockout, James and Hughes, and a third, Darrell Reid, had the charges dropped due to a lack of evidence. The San Diego Union-Tribune has a database of all NFL arrests.
Under Caldwell’s direct supervision, a total of four players have been arrested. John Gill was clearly suffering from other problems. Pat McAfee, as much as I like him it was only a matter of time before he got arrested. Honestly, it was probably good for him to be calmed down a bit.
The Hughes incident will be forgotten, and we will move on. This should be a minor concern for Colts fans and is not indicative of a trend that is plaguing the team.