In a press conference this morning, NFL representatives said the new “Social Responsibility Club” will set up a series of milestones that will be paid out to players for a clean police record.
The announcement of the incentive comes since several NFL stars have been catapulted into the media spotlight for allegations of domestic violence and other criminal behavior. America’s most popular sport wishes to clean up its act and to set a better example for children looking up to these gifted athletes.
The program breaks down into a base bonus of $5,000 for each week of not being arrested with a $10,000 bonus for each month. In total, a player can earn $30,000 per month or $360,000 per year for non-criminal behavior.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said an award will be given to players who have a perfect record at the end of each season.
“We’ll have a ceremony and dinner for the winners where they can bring their families and give speeches,” Goodell said. “The networks have already shown interest in broadcasting the event.
“In addition to fines and suspensions, cash payouts for good behavior is a great next step for the league. Instead of just punishing players, we want to positively reinforce them to not break the law and be a good citizen in the community. Only 30 percent of the players cause trouble. We want to see that drop by 5 percentage points. Cash will make that happen.
“With a goal of a 25 percent arrest rate for the 2014 season, the league hopes to see a 15 percent arrest rate by the 2021 season. While it’s ambitious, we feel we have the resources and support in place to achieve the target arrest rate.”
Newly hired VP of football operations Troy Vincent told ESPN.com, “Teams give bonuses for working out and attending off-season minicamps with great success. It only makes sense for the league to give bonuses for avoiding beating up women, beating up children, drunk driving, possession of marijuana, possession of illegal firearms, dog fighting, and the list goes on.
“It’s a good PR move and I’m proud to be involved. Face it: If we adopted a zero tolerance policy, we would have trouble fielding teams.”