Ray Lewis made some interesting comments in a recent interview with ESPN's Sal Paolantonio, saying that crime will rise if the NFL season is canceled. Judging by initial reactions on the message boards, I’m guessing some of you would use a different adjective to describe the Ravens linebacker’s comments.
“Do this research if we don't have a season -- watch how much evil, which we call crime, watch how much crime picks up, if you take away our game," Lewis said in the interview, which you can watch here.
Lewis was referring to fans, but several of his peers have had brushes with the law during the lockout.
"There's too many people that live through us, people live through us," he said. "Yeah, walk in the streets, the way I walk the streets, and I'm not talking about the people you see all the time."
Asked why he thought crime would increase during a lockout, Lewis said, “there's nothing else to do."
I can kind of see where Lewis is coming from on this one. When the Ravens play on Sunday afternoons in the fall, Baltimore comes to a halt until the final whistle. But we won’t need to put martial law in affect if we don’t have football. Dangerous criminals won’t roam the streets like in “Escape from New York.” The vast majority of football fans are emotionally capable of dealing with the possibility of the lockout. I don’t think Lewis is giving his fans enough credit, which is why some are outraged by his comments.
I do think such a study would be interesting, though. Who knows, maybe crime would decrease. There would be fewer alcohol-related arrests on Sundays, that’s for sure. But here’s hoping the owners and players resolve their issues so we won’t have to find out.
Your turn: What’s your take on Lewis’ belief that crime will rise if we don’t have football around to distract us?