Has The NFC North Power Balance Shifted?

Brad JamesCorrespondent IDecember 3, 2008

I do not condone cheating in any way.

For this reason, Bill Belichick with his snarky and controversial behavior has become in my mind one of the more vilified figures in the NFL today.

With that said, regardless of whether or not the Minnesota Vikings' massive defensive tackles Kevin and Pat Williams knowingly took the substance for which they each received a four-game ban, the rules on the NFL's drug policy are quite clear.

The rule states that at the end of the day, NFL players are responsible for what goes into their bodies.

It is a shame that the Minnesota Vikings, who looked absolutely electric against the Chicago Bears last Sunday night, are now in serious danger of squandering their one-game lead in the NFC North and miss the playoffs.

Many have criticized the NFL for suspending players who were reportedly in ignorance, but this goes back to lessons I learned playing youth league sports in south central Utah.

You need to be accountable for what you do lest you let your teammates down.

An example of this occurred in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge Tuesday when Miami (Fla.) star Jack McClinton punched Ohio State's Anthony Crater in the face.

The result was an ejection for McClinton and a subsequent 73-68 Buckeyes win which saw the Hurricanes get cold behind the arc. With the prolific McClinton in the game this wouldn't have happened.

Therefore, when athletes misbehave they cost not only themselves a chance at excelling but of greater importance, they hurt their teammates.

While this obviously hurts the Vikings, they received numerous contributions from the likes of Bernard Berrian, Adrian Peterson, Darren Sharper and electrifying rookie Darius Reynaud against the Bears.

Other teams that will make the postseason in all likelihood such as the Broncos and Colts have overcome considerable adversity and that's what the Vikings must do here.