Broncos lead NFL in domestic violence arrests during Roger Goodell era

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DENVER — In the eight-plus years that Roger Goodell has been commissioner of the NFL, the Denver Broncos have led the league in domestic violence-related arrests, according to a new report.

An examination of NFL arrest records details 56 domestic violence-related arrests since Goodell took over as commissioner in 2006.

Of those 56 instances, the involved players were suspended for a combined total of 13 games.

We looked into these arrest records following TMZ’s release of a surveillance video that showed former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice knocking out Janay Palmer, his then-fiancee and current wife, inside a New Jersey casino and hotel elevator.

Though Rice’s initial two-game suspension has been upped to an indefinite one by Goodell, the NFL Commissioner has been criticized for the light initial suspension and for not making a more concerted effort to obtain the surveillance footage.

Unfortunately for the Broncos, these records don’t exactly trudge up great memories. The team leads the NFL with 10 domestic violence-related arrests since 2006 — incidents that led to three total games’ worth of combined suspensions.

However, it’s also worth noting that no Bronco has been convicted of a domestic violence-related charge in that time span, and none of the players involved in those arrests are still a members of the Broncos organization.

Ex-Bronco Brandon Marshall, who had three domestic violence-related arrests during his four years with the Broncos, accounted for a great deal of the team’s arrests since 2006. But if you took him out of the equation, the Broncos would still lead the NFL in domestic violence-related arrests with seven in that span.

The next closest teams — the Atlanta Falcons, Miami Dolphins, Pittsburgh Steelers and Seattle Seahawks — have seen players arrested four times on domestic violence-related charges since 2006.

There were eight teams out of 32 — the Chicago Bears, Cleveland Browns, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, New York Giants, Philadelphia Eagles and Washington Redskins — that had no reported domestic violence-related arrests during Goodell’s era as league commissioner.

The vast majority of domestic violence-related arrests for the Broncos over the last eight-plus years occurred under former head coaches Mike Shannahan and Josh McDaniels. There were five arrests under Shannahan’s watch and four arrests under McDaniels’ watch since 2006.

Since John Fox took over as Broncos head coach in 2011, there has been just one domestic-violence related arrest — that being defensive tackle Ryan McBean’s arrest in 2011.

During his nine seasons as head coach of the Carolina Panthers, none of Fox’s players were arrested on domestic violence-related charges.

When presented with the above information, a Broncos spokesperson said “we’ve moved forward from any incidents that have occurred under previous head coaches.”

Fox also addressed his stance on the issue of domestic violence when speaking to reporters on Monday.

“My personal thing is there’s no place for it in our league or really in our society,” Fox said. “It’s something I think our guys understand. I’m not worried.”

RELATED: Broncos’ Terrance Knighton voices disgust with Ray Rice, calls on NFL brethren to do same

McBean, the lone Bronco arrested on domestic violence-related charges during Fox’s tenure as an NFL head coach, was accused of stalking his ex-girlfriend. Those charges were dropped, and the NFL did not take any disciplinary action against him. McBean was suspended for six games in 2012 for an unrelated issue — a failed drug test. He was cut by the Broncos after that season.

Ex-Broncos Sam Brandon, Daniel Graham, Jerome Mathis, Richard Quinn and Kevin Alexander also had all charges against them dropped after domestic violence-related arrests. Of those five, Brandon was the only one subject to league discipline — a two-game suspension. Alexander was also cut by the Broncos just hours after his arrest.

Perhaps the most notorious domestic violence-related arrests for the Broncos since 2006 have been Perrish Cox and Marshall.

Cox was arrested in 2010, the same year the Broncos drafted him as a cornerback out of Oklahoma State. He was accused of raping and impregnating an unconscious woman in his home.

Though prosecutors insisted DNA evidence linked Cox to the crime, it took a jury just six hours to acquit him of all charges in 2012.

The Broncos released Cox before the 2011 season, and he spent that year out of the NFL. He was signed by the San Francisco 49ers in 2012, and has spent the ensuing three seasons between the 49ers and Seahawks. He has never received any official punishment by the NFL.

Marshall, now a Chicago Bears wide receiver, had three domestic violence-related arrests during his time with the Broncos.

In 2007, Marshall was charged with false imprisonment after a dispute with a girlfriend, who accused him of hitting her car window and preventing her from entering a taxi. Those charges were dismissed after Marshall completed anger management counseling programs.

In 2008, Marshall was charged with numerous instances of domestic violence against the same girlfriend over a two-month period. He was acquitted of those charges, but initially issued a three-game suspension by the NFL. That suspension was reduced to one game after an appeal.

In 2009, Marshall was accused of disorderly conduct after a confrontation with a different women, his then-fiancee. The charges were dropped, and Marshall received no punishment from the NFL.

Marshall is now married to Michi Nogami-Marshall, the women involved in the 2009 incident.

Details about each former Bronco who has been arrested on domestic-violence related charges since 2006 can be found below.

Sam Brandon – S – 2006

Brandon Marshall – WR – 2007

  • Arrest details: Charged with false imprisonment in dispute with girlfriend, accused of hitting her car window and blocking her taxi. She later said that Marshall attacked her the day before as well, but that she did not report the attack to the police.
  • Legal punishment: Charges were dismissed after Marshall completed anger management counseling.
  • NFL punishment: None

Brandon Marshall – WR – 2008

Daniel Graham – TE – 2008

Jerome Mathis – WR – 2008

Brandon Marshall – WR – 2009

Richard Quinn – TE – 2009

Perrish Cox – CB – 2010

Kevin Alexander – LB – 2010

Ryan McBean – DT – 2011

  • Arrest details: Accused of stalking an ex-girlfriend.
  • Legal punishment: Charges dropped.
  • NFL punishment: None

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