Aaron Hernandez's career in the NFL has never been dimmer.
The former New England Patriots tight end whose name has been in the headlines nonstop throughout this week not only has to worry about jail time, but must consider his career as a professional football player is likely over.
The NFL informed teams Thursday that any contract with Hernandez before the charges filed against him are resolved will not be approved without a hearing from Commissioner Roger Goodell.
The hearing would be on the disciplinary variety, in which Goodell would decide whether Hernandez would be suspended or face another form of punishment. No player contract with Hernandez can be reached without said hearing.
For all of the fans wondering why their team is not looking to sign Hernandez -- well, this is why. All of the red flags surrounding the tight end during the weeks leading up to the 2010 Draft are coming to fruition. According to a report, Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots was the sole organization willing to take a chance on Hernandez after it was discovered the tight end failed a drug test and had questionable character concerns and associates.
Now, with such hurdles to get over before a team can sign Hernandez, the chances of the New York Giants -- or any team for that matter -- become slim to none.
In the case of the Giants, there isn't a need at tight end. Sure, if there is a chance to pick up a Pro Bowl-caliber play-maker it's hard to say he wouldn't improve the offense. But for an organization that has as close to a zero-tolerance policy in the league, it is impossible to ignore the risks of signing Hernandez, as well as the scrutiny that would inevitably follow in a media market such as New York.
Here is a chart showing the arrests by franchise since 2000. The Giants, as you would expect, are near the bottom of the list.
If any team is contemplating going through with a hearing with Goodell and possibly signing Hernandez, it needs to seriously make sure they know what they are doing. He faces a possible suspension as well as jail time, so really, what's the use in paying him to take up a roster spot?
Hernandez was charged with first-degree murder in the death of Odin Lloyd, who investigators believe may have been targeted because he had information that connected the former Pats tight end to the double murders that occurred in July 2012 in Boston, a case in which Hernandez is also a suspect in.
Hernandez is also facing five additional gun-related charges. On Thursday, he was denied bail. He also cleared waves, officially becoming a free agent, which coincided with the league announcement of the hearing prior to signing him.
In addition to the Massachusetts law enforcement officials investigation into the murder, the NFL's security department has launched a separate investigation.
Right now, Hernandez is an untouchable. It does not appear that will change unless something drastically changes, and soon.
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