Before we get to today's blog topic of Plaxico Burress, a quick note on a current New York Giants player - Elisha Manning. This morning, E. Manning agreed to a new $97.5 million contract with the Giants, making him the third highest paid player (based on annual salary) in the NFL. Higher than Ben Roethlisberger and E. Manning's older brother, Peyton. Let's recap, shall we. In the middle of the 2007 NFL season, Giants fans were calling for E. Manning's head and wondering why in the hell they traded Philip Rivers, and draft picks that resulted in Shawne Merriman and Nate Kaeding for this b-u-m. Two missed holding calls, a miraculous sack escape, a David Tyree once-in-ten-lifetimes catch (lest we forget none of that matters if Asante Samuel makes an interception he makes 9 times out of 10, a few plays earlier), followed by a home playoff loss the following season, and suddenly your $100-million man is Elisha Manning? Really? Ok. Good luck with that. Now, on to the topic at hand.....
Yesterday, former Giants Wide Receiver, Plaxico Burress was indicted by a New York grand jury on felony weapons charges. If convicted, he faces anywhere from 3 1/2 - 15 years in prison. If he pleads out before the trial begins, the DA says he will still face 2 years in prison. I know you all know this already. Just wanted to recap. One more time for the people in the back - Plaxico Burress, for all intent and purposes, appears to be headed to prison for somewhere between 2 - 15 years. Yes, he was carrying a weapon without a New York permit inside of the state of New York. That weapon did go off in a New York nightclub, whereby, theoretically, someone could have been injured or killed. He acted recklessly. He broke a law. He deserves to be punished. I am not disputing any of this. Of course, the only person that was actually injured when the gun went off, was Burress himself. And now, for his troubles, he's most likely going to prison - for probably no less than 730 days (731 days, if his prison sentence includes the leap year of 2012).
Meanwhile, in apparently unrelated news, Leonard Little and Donte' Stallworth got drunk and got behind the wheels of their respective vehicles. While they were each driving to their destinations, they each got in accidents that resulted in someone's death. Once again, quick recap - Little and Stallworth got drunk. They drove. People wound up dead. And the sum total of days spent in prison for Little and Stallworth........84 days.......combined! Burress is looking at no less than 730 days. Little spent 60 days in jail. Stallworth suffered through 24 whole days in jail. Little and Stallworth did have to do some community service work. I'm sure that comforts the victims' families.
In the case of Little, it gets even worse. Here is a man whose BAC was a whopping .19 when he had his fatal accident. Six years later, the courts saw fit to wipe the involuntary manslaughter from his record. And clearly Little had learned his lesson...because shortly after the manslaughter was wiped from his record, Little was arrested.....for drunk driving. Since the fatal accident occurred, Little has gone on to win a Super Bowl with the St Louis Rams and led the league in sacks. All because nobody saw fit to sack Little with a real punishment.
Stallworth's case is sketchy, shady and just flat out reeks. In the same state where former MLB player, Jim Leyritz killed a man while driving under the influence (.14 BAC) and now faces charges of vehicular manslaughter and may spend up to 15 years or more in prison, Stallworth, whose BAC was .12 at the time he struck and killed a pedestrian, spent 24 days in jail before being released. Stallworth is waiting to hear from the NFL on when or if he can play this season. Of course, let's not forget that after Stallworth was released from jail, it was leaked that he was also under the influence of marijuana while he was driving his car that killed a man. Somehow, 24 days doesn't quite seem like a reasonable punishment here.
Let me make one thing clear. I do not like Plaxico Burress. I do not like him in a box. I do not like him with a fox. I do not like him Sam. I do not like him Sam I am (sorry, when you have a 5 year old, Dr. Seuss plays a big role in your life). But the treatment he is receiving just doesn't appear to be on par or just. He's an athlete- but should not get preferential treatment. I get that. I agree with it. But how is Burress staring at 2 years or more in prison, while Little and Stallworth spent 84 combined days in jail? Then again, on a day when Elisha Manning just robbed the New York Giants of almost $100 million, I guess I can believe just about anything.