NFL arrest numbers are high but not off the charts

Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez, right, stands with attorney Michael Fee during a bail hearing in Fall River Superior Court on Thursday.
(Ted Fitzgerald / Associated Press)

With former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez being held on a first-degree murder charge, the spotlight is focused on NFL arrests.

Numerous reports are saying there have been 27 NFL arrests since the Super Bowl. The San Diego U-T’s database of NFL arrests actually has the number up at 32.

Either way, it’s a troubling statistic, but is it unusual? Not really.


Using the San Diego U-T’s database, I counted the number of arrests between the Super Bowl and July 1 in each of the four previous years, and the tally is fairly consistent: 21 in 2012, 25 in 2011, 23 in 2010, and 22 in 2009.

As NFL spokesman Greg Aiello has said, one arrest is one too many, but the count of 27 arrests this year doesn’t in itself indicate a significant uptick in NFL crimes in comparison to recent years.

The real eye-opener off-season, numbers-wise, came five years ago, when there were 41 arrests between the Feb. 7, 2008, Super Bowl and July 1, 2008.


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