Why The Dallas Cowboys Should Welcome Josh Brent Back

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Dec 2, 2012; Arlington, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys nose tackle Josh Brent (92) on the sidelines against the Philadelphia Eagles at Cowboys Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Former Dallas Cowboys defensive tackle Josh Brent has been handed down a sentence of what amounts to 10 years probation as a result of one amazingly stupid decision. The 180 days he’ll spend in prison doesn’t appear to be a sentence that will prevent him from possibly playing football again as early as next season—or at least it would appear that way.

A maximum sentence of 20 years was on the table for Brent, a defendant that didn’t appear to have much in the way of any defense in this case. He also had a prior arrest for driving while intoxicated back in 2009 while attending University of Illinois.

No, this didn’t look good at all. Granted, intoxication manslaughter is a good ways off from first-degree murder. Yet I still never expected Brent to play professional football again, a distinct possibility depending on how the future unfolds for the three-year veteran.

Good for Brent.

Yes, you heard me right: Good for Brent.

Let me explain.

I know everything that you know about Brent, provided you have followed this story from start to finish. I was aware that Brent was a 2010 NFL Supplemental Draft choice of the Cowboys, although I didn’t know he had a prior DUI arrest when he was selected.

It’s clear to me that Brent had options, with respect to getting home, on the morning of this awful tragedy. I understand that it was also best friend and teammate Jerry Brown’s decision to get in the car with Brent, a mistake that had to be made for this incident to go as badly as it did in the first place. I know that Brent, by himself, is not responsible for Brown’s poor judgment, even despite the fact that the driver wasn’t sporting a lick of common sense on his own.

But I also know something else—and so do you, and I think that we should all applaud this outcome.

There is nobody on this Earth that hurts more than Stacey Jackson. She happens to be Brent’s mother and I think that nobody’s voice should be heard prior to hers—and that includes the legal system.

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  • SmartThinking

    Bringing back Brent sends the wrong message that pampered, privileged football players don’t have to be responsible for their actions. After Brent pays the absolute minimum price for killing another individual, Big Daddy Jones will be there and give him a few million for his time off. Brent needs to atone. And we need to see him do it before he should be allowed the privilege of playing pro football again … for any team.

    • Christian Blood

      I agree, SmartThinking. Still, the law has spoken in this matter and it’s not like Brent got off any easier than normal folks in Texas that have been found guilty of the same infraction.

      So long as alcohol is going to be served at as many establishments as it is and young kids are given the kind of money they are to play a game they normally stop playing shortly after puberty, this is what the NFL is, period.

      There’s other messages to be absorbed here which extend far beyond the crash and fatality itself. This is my only point … in other words, if locking up Brent for 1,000 years would eliminate drunken driving then I might say go ahead. But this is far from the case.

      The NFL hasn’t been able to send positive messages to the fan base for decades now.

  • Scott.

    I agree that bringing back Brent sends the wrong message(smartthinking) and I also agree that the justice system showed flexibility because the mother of deceased was forgiving. Being part of the system for twenty plus years I have seen the positive and negatives of the system. Jerry’s though process on this just might be: I’m going to get critized whatever I do, the def line needs help so it makes sense.

    • Christian Blood

      Scott, that’s pretty much the deal. This is a business, and big businesses are never going to do without, period … at least not unless they have to.

      Locking up Brent for 20 years send no different message, legally speaking, than giving him 10 years probation.

      Let me add that while I would have no problem with him playing for the Cowboys again, I certainly would never let him behind the wheel of a car during those 10 years. That’s a completely different story.

  • GoalLineStan

    Brent coming back to Dallas is wrong, wrong, wrong! Whether the guy’s mother he killed forgave him is irrelevant. Until Brent demonstrates he’s sorry for what he did, he ought not to make millions from football.

    • Christian Blood

      Who are you, or I for that matter, to judge whether or not Brent is sorry? That’s pretty impossible to gauge, don’t you think?

      The law has spoken and that’s the final word in this situation.

      • SmartThinking

        You keep bringing up the law having spoken in this matter. Like that’s supposed to be some deciding factor in whether or not Brent is given another chance to contribute for this team.

        At least until the government changes that too, you have a right to express your opinion by writing the story. We have a right to express ours by responding. And you’re not the judge of how those responses go either so dial down the criticism about three or four notches.

        Everyone doesn’t think the same. That’s what makes reading these responses so interesting. Cut ole Stan a break and rejoice in the knowledge that people are actually engaged in a dialogue over something you wrote.

        Besides, the game’s passed Brent by.

        And that’s my opinion.

  • John

    Brown’s mother not only forgave Brent. She was the one who reached out to the Cowboys organization and told them to support Brent and not give up on him. It’s not his fault his job pays millions and yours don’t. Why should he lose his job over the incident when he’s already been punished.If you think playing in the NFL is a privilege. Then you clearly never played any big boy football before.