What are we to do with Brandon Marshall. How many times can we simply turn the other cheek, to explain things away with excuses like "He wasn't charged, so..."? We all know Marshall is extremely talented, we know he has a tremendous upside. One other thing we know, it is safe to say, is Marshall has trouble keeping himself away from law enforcement. Marshall is walking a fine-line when it comes to his behavior off the field.
The latest incident continues a long, disturbing trend for Marshall. Since entering the NFL in 2006, Marshall has been involved in 6 separate instances in which the police were called or notified. Add in the "horseplay" that injured his arm, and there is a pattern of behavior that should concern us and the team. For his part, Marshall has said that he was ready to grow up and take his profession seriously, "My goal for the summer is to be clean- cut and don't get into trouble," Marshall said March 27. "But it's kind of tough when I put myself in that environment. So I've got to take myself out of those environments and just hang around the right people."
This latest occurrence, which saw Marshall arrested on March 6, involved his girlfriend and an alleged physical altercation in Atlanta. Marshall was there training with Broncos QB Jay Cutler at the time. He was booked into Fulton County Jail and released on $1000 bond. The case was turned over to the County Solicitor Generals office on June 4th and official charges could be pending. With a pending court date this fall for a DUI charge, Marshall could be looking at a suspension by the NFL under the Player Conduct Policy.
I have written and talked at length about Marshall, his conduct, and my gorwing discontent with his actions. "Not getting charged" isn't enough for me to brush over it or cover it up. I am a Denver Broncos fan, and anything any player, coach, fan, etc does to bring negative light on the franchise angers and annoys me. Even more so when it is a player that has so much damn upside. We talk alot about perpetual trouble makers Adam Jones, Tank Johnson and Chris Henry, but should we be looking in our own backyard? Is Brandon Marshall the same type of guy?
Only time will tell, and I am not giving up on Marshall, yet. But my patience is wearing thin, and with the movement of the organization, from the top down, towards players that are as classy off the field as they are talented on it, Brandon Marhshall needs to clean up his act, and fast, or his days as a Denver Bronco could be numbered.
Below is a breakdown, a rap sheet if you will, of Marshall's transgressions since joining the Broncos, via the Denver Post -
Date: March 6, 2008
Location: Atlanta, GA
Incident: Marshall's girlfriend claimed Marshall hit her in the mouth and eye on March 4, leaving her with "visible marks above the eye and a laceration on her top and bottom lip.
Result: The case is in the hands of Fulton County authorities and they have yet to decide on formal charges.
Date: October 22, 2007
Location: Denver, CO
Incident: Marshall is arrested after reportedly driving the wrong way on a one-way street in Denver.
Result: Marshall pleaded not guilty and his trial is scheduled for September 16.
Date: March 26, 2007
Location: Highlands Ranch
Arrested: Domestic Violence and false imprisionment.
Incident: Marshall's girlfriend called police to Marshall's home after the couple got into a fight. Marshall was accused of blocking a taxi the girlfriend was in with another vehicle and pounding on the taxi's windows. This happened several times before the taxi driver was able to get away.
Result: Charges were dismissed in May 2007
Date: March 21, 2007
Location: Palm Beach County, FL
Incident: Police interview Marshall after they were called to the scene of an argument between Marshall and his girlfriend near Boca Raton. While both sides claimed the confrontation was not violent, Marshall admitted to slamming an iron pipe to the ground in frustration after his girlfriend left the area.
Date: January 24, 2007
Location: Orange County Florida
Incident: Police interview Marshall and his father, Frederick, outside a bowling alley after the two got into an argument over money. According to the police report, Frederick Marshall said his son fired a gun, a claim that was not supported by witnesses. Brandon Marshall said his father tried to run him over with his car and repeatedly told his son that he would "ruin his football career". Both father and son refused to press charges and neither was arrested.
Date: June 17, 2006
Location: Orange County, Fl
Incident: Once again, Marshall's girlfriend is involved, this time telling police that Marshall slapped her, pushed her to the ground and grabbed her arms during an argument that spanned several hours in their apartment. She also claimed that Marshall through a phone or remote control at her, striking her in the forehead and cutting her above the eye. A formal statement was sent to police in October 2006, but charges were never filed.