Report: NFL player crime rate down 39% this year, league finds
The NFL has found that the crime rate among its players is down 39% this year, reports Jane McManus of ESPN.
The findings are part of a report by personal conduct committee chairman and Arizona Cardinals president Mike Bidwill.
The report states that the NFL averaged approximately 70 player arrests annually from 2007 to 2014. Of those incidents, 20 were violent and 50 were non-violent crimes.
This year, players have been arrested for crimes as severe as domestic violence, sexual assault, child abuse and drunken driving.
“Since Jan. 1, 2015, there have been 11 arrests for violent offenses and 28 for nonviolent offenses, a 44 percent decrease in total arrests from the historic average, and a 39 percent decrease in total arrests as compared to the same period in 2014,” the report says, according to ESPN.
The NFL hired former ATF director Todd Jones and former prosecutor Lisa Friel to lead the league's investigative efforts last year. The hirings followed the controversy over the league's handling of Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice's domestic violence case.
The NFL is still working on getting full cooperation from alleged victims and witnesses in specific cases, which the lack of key figures results in a lack of evidence and cases closed. The NFL does have the chance to re-open investigations if evidence is presented later on.
The arrest rate among NFL players is low compared to national averages for men in their respective age range, a study by FiveThirtyEight found.
Changes may be made where Vikings running back Adrian Peterson and Cowboys defensive end Greg Hardy won appeals based off penalties that were applied retroactively or due to NFL's handling of the case. The NFL, CBA and NFL Players' Association looks to move into a system where there is more neutral arbitration in the handling of specific cases.