Sometimes it’s better to be lucky than good. On Sunday Zach Ertz was both, and on one play.
The pass from Carson Wentz was awful. He totally missed a Chiefs’ defender who was just sitting on the route. This will almost always result in an interception, but the ball popped up perfectly to tight end Zach Ertz, who never gave up on the play.
It would have been understandable if he pulled up, because it really wasn’t close — but by keeping up a head of steam, he was able to catch the ball and run down the field. For a while it looked like he’d score, but we can forgive not getting into the end zone because after all, he turned nothing into something.
With Rice, the league issued a two-game suspension that was later changed to an indefinite ban after the video of Rice knocking out his then-fiancee went public. Rice’s wife, the victim, was present at his disciplinary hearing and gave a statement in support of her husband.
Goodell admitted he “didn’t get it right” with Rice’s discipline, and the league revised its domestic violence policy as a result and instituted that six-game threshold for players who violate it.
Greg Hardy was accused, and initially convicted, of domestic violence against a former girlfriend. The complaint alleged that Hardy hit her, dragged her, and threw her on a futon covered with firearms. Hardy’s conviction was overturned on appeal, in part because his accuser did not cooperate with prosecutors.
She also did not cooperate with the league’s investigation. Still, Hardy was suspended for 10 games, which is more than the baseline. The policy allows for that if there are “aggravating factors.” But his suspension was reduced to four games on appeal.