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There weren't these kind of red flags on Aaron Hernandez

The Aaron Hernandez story is yet another example of what happens when people who participate and cover sports have to talk about something real.


Whenever real news happens in the sports world, we really get to see how unprepared most of the mainstream sports journalists are to cover it. The ESPN anchors who are wholly unprepared to talk about serious subjects almost comically lower their voices and furrow their brows in an attempt to appear serious. National sports writers are obliged to offer some context to the serious story, so they try to find some way to relate it to sports.

Did Hernandez's coaches fail him? Is the Patriots' ability to assess character in the draft at fault? Then there is, of course, the discussion of whether there were "red flags" that might have actually clued us in to the possibility that Hernandez might, ya know, be a murderer.

Even other players fall victim to this silly narrative. Raiders punter Chris Kluwe, who often speaks intelligently on social issues, said there were "red flags" with Hernandez.

"There's a reason why this guy (Hernandez) dropped to the fourth round," Kluwe said on an appearance on Jim Rome on Showtime. "There's a reason why a guy with that talent wasn't taken in the first round. That means you are taking a flier on a guy who you know may potentially have those problems. Some guys end up not doing anything with those problems. Some guys allegedly murder someone. The warning signs were there."

Here are the warning signs Kluwe was talking about. A failed drug test for marijuana. That's it. Sorry Chris Kluwe, that is in no way a sign that a guy might potentially be a murderer. That's just complete and total nonsense.

Here's a message for the sports press. Other than the fact that Hernandez is an NFL player, this has nothing to do with sports. Urban Meyer or Bill Belichick couldn't have done more as his coach. A failed marijuana test could not have predicted this. A guy who potentially killed multiple people is not and was never going to be fixed or figured out by coaches or NFL scouts. If Aaron Hernandez is guilty of the crimes he's accused of, then he's probably a psychopath (sociopath?). And dealing with that is far beyond the capacity of football coaches or talent evaluators.

Sports press want to relate this to sports because that's the area they're comfortable in. That's what they feel like they can talk about. But this case isn't about sports. Just like it wouldn't be about insurance if Aaron Hernandez worked at MetLife instead of the New England Patriots.

But since Hernandez is a football player, ESPN will have to follow the story and people like Peter King will have to write about it. And they will do an awful job in doing so because they're woefully unprepared to talk about real news.

I'm just going to assume that when Brian Williams is reporting on the Hernandez case, his analysis is a little more refined...