Their response has demonstrated bunker mentality. They're working their backchannels with the sponsors, throwing money/perks at them, and hoping it goes away.
Meanwhile, the talking heads debate ad nauseum about whether athletes should be role models.
They're on to something. The NFL should launch a "Role Models" program.
Players who DON'T qualify (see criteria below*):
- Cannot sign sponsorship deals
- Cannot appear in NFL promotional media (ads, spots, visuals, interviews) or any off-field activities/media related to the NFL
- Cannot play in the Pro Bowl or other off-season promotional events
- Cannot be admitted to the Hall of Fame
- A significant annual bonus directly from the NFL, payable in installments over the subsequent 2 years unless they are removed from the program
- 2+ years with the league
- No criminal activity for the past 5 years
- No suspensions or fines from the team or NFL
- No violations of NFL or NCAA policies on drugs, conduct, etc.