About a week and a half ago, I was driving in my car when it occurred to me that there have been no horrific off-the-field stories involving the Pittsburgh Steelers so far this offseason.
Sure, Ben Roethlisberger cryptically hinted at retirement shortly after the season, and around that time, news broke that head coach Mike Tomlin and assistant coach Joey Porter may have acted like soccer moms at their kids high school football games. But other than those stories (and the possible hold-out of Le’Veon Bell), things had been fairly quiet on the South Side front.
But no sooner had those nice, soothing thoughts crossed my mind, some radio personality on an afternoon Top 40 station came on the air in-between songs and started ranting about cornerback Artie Burns and how disappointed she was in him for letting his fans and teammates down.
My mind started to race.
What did Burns do? Who did he hit? What did he smoke? What did he fail?
Did he get thrown off of a plane for disorderly conduct? Did footage surface of him washing his car with the American Flag?
Obviously, it wasn’t long before I found out Burns was arrested in his hometown of Miami for driving with a suspended license, thanks to owing over $1,000 in unpaid traffic tickets.
After this discovery, my first thought was, “Should I know about this? And if so, should I be outraged?”
I wasn’t outraged, of course.
Yes, Burns was arrested, so obviously it was news. But how awful of a crime was this, and did it have to be plastered on multiple news-outlets, including ProFootballTalk, where it was accompanied by a bunch of idiotic remarks from people who I’m sure have never failed to pay a ticket?
Anyway, I wonder if the recent news of Burns’ “transgressions” has caused some fans to once again fight the moral dilemma of cheering for the Steelers and the NFL, what with another “bad apple” found in the bunch.
Will Burns be disciplined? Sure, by the City of Miami and the State of Florida, of course. But what about the National Football League?
Should he be?
I know what you might say: “He’s a menace to society! Won’t somebody please think of the children!” (Simpsons, Mr. Burns is a character on the show—see what I did there?)
Sure, Burns could be a driving menace to society, that is if he was 102 years old or been convicted of several DUI’s.
But a menace for failing to pay traffic tickets?
Should Burns be suspended for conduct detrimental to the league? If he isn’t, will certain groups start popping up and pressure commissioner Roger Goodell to do something about the NFL’s Scofflaw problem that’s, well, pretty much on par with the rest of society?
Maybe the league should do something about this, since it failed to address its littering problem years ago, when Antonio Brown and Emmanuel Sanders were cited for such behavior back in the summer of 2012.
Just kidding, of course.
I’d like to thank Burns for getting arrested for unpaid traffic tickets. Why? Because it makes me think of Newman from Seinfeld, the most famous Scofflaw of all, and when I think of Newman from Seinfeld, those nice, soothing offseason thoughts come flooding back to my mind.
And they push out Artie Burns’ arrest for traffic violations, which really is none of my business.