Dallas Cowboys Sending Wrong Message By Keeping Jay Ratliff

By Ben Grimaldi
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Cowboys had two players get arrested within a six week span for drinking and driving. The first player was Josh Brent, who was driving with a blood alcohol level more than twice the legal limit, then got into an accident that killed friend and teammate Jerry Brown.

The second player was Jay Ratliff. Ratliff, who wasn’t smart enough to learn from the tragedy of a fallen teammate, was also arrested for drinking and driving a few weeks later, but thankfully did not harm anyone else while doing so. The Cowboys would certainly miss Ratliff’s play on the defensive line, even as his skills have diminished.

However, according to the Star-Telegram, Jason Garrett told reporters he “absolutely” believes Ratliff will be part of the Cowboys next season.

“Jay Ratliff is an outstanding football player,” Garrett said. “He’s been a Pro Bowl player for us. He plays with a great demeanor for us, great desire and passion for the game…He’s always been an up-the-field guy and played on a shade and done a great job disrupting opposing offenses. We’re excited to get him going in this scheme.”

Where in those quotes did it sound like the Cowboys are thinking of cutting the mercurial defensive lineman? Garrett’s implying that Ratliff, despite his arrest, will be playing for the Dallas Cowboys in 2013. Does anyone else see anything wrong with that? Because I certainly do.

I said it the day it happened and I’ll say it again, Jay Ratliff should never play another down for the Cowboys again. They should cut him as soon as it makes the most fiscal sense, and the team should move on without him. Keeping Ratliff sends the wrong message about the Cowboys organization that they are condoning his behavior and think it’s okay to drink and drive if you’re good at sports. They are saying that winning is more important than being responsible and doing the right thing.

Don’t get me wrong – people deserve a second chance, but after what happened just weeks prior to Ratliff’s arrest, you would think he would have learned a lesson. It’s obvious that he didn’t learn a thing, and the Cowboys don’t need someone on the team who has no concept of right and wrong.

The Dallas Cowboys are missing an opportunity to send the right message by releasing Jay Ratliff. By continuing to support him, the Cowboys are making a big mistake and they should be ashamed of themselves.

you can chat with or follow Ben on twitter @BenGrimaldi

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