The Seattle Seahawks franchise and fanbase should be ashamed of themselves.
On June 8th Golden Tate broke into the Top Pot Donuts establishment below his Seattle area apartment, reportedly en route to stealing some allegedly delicious maple bars. Nothing of great value was stolen, but the night baker received the fright of her life.
Now, I can take a joke as well as anyone, and one look at my profile picture will let readers know my take on donuts, but this is no joke.
This one minor technicality from breaking and entering.
Please, Seahawks fans, stop pretending it isn't.
Pete Carroll laughed off the incident in a tweet, saying: "A great maple bar is a great maple bar, right golden?? They don't come along everyday...a classic TopPot temptation."
Way to go coach, you have effectively hamstrung yourself (quite publicly) when it comes to any future discipline of a similar nature.
Then again, knowing Carroll (and today's likely USC sanctions), it isn't like discipline is going to be something the Seattle Seahawks will be known for.
It seems like that the fact this was a donut shop is lightening this story for everyone. Should that even matter? The law doesn't differentiate between breaking and entering when the establishment provides tasty food stuffs.
Be honest. If this had been a teenage kid, he'd have taken a ride downtown and would have been facing a judge at the next available opportunity with a highly incompetent lawyer in tow.
What if the night baker had recently watched a local news story about a nighttime crime and decided to start bringing a handgun to work.
Bu, no one was hurt and this was a football player, so we all laugh and make jokes about how funny it is that he would steal donuts.
So what if Tate got a diamond earring urge after consuming one-too-many alcoholic beverages? Or what if he had just shoplifted some Twinkies from the nearest Kwik-E-Mart?
Still no big deal?
This is a horrible precedent for the Seahawks (although not surprising to start the Carroll era) and for the NFL in general.
The NFLPA spends valuable time and resources trying to get NFL players to act like and be treated as businessmen. The union and league host symposiums and weekend retreats to educate young players on NFL life.
"Theft 101" is not one of the courses.
Neither is "Intermediate: You Get Whatever You Want" (although, Reggie Bush would be a great instructor).
All this is moot if it was just a horribly planned endorsement stunt—Top Pot is a new sponsor for both the Seahawks and Coach Carroll.
However, if it was a stunt, who in their right mind would OK this? Tate's and Carroll's agents should never have let their clients anywhere near this. The Seahawks' PR people could have planned something much less risky.
Top Pot said it wasn't a stunt, however, and isn't risking its deal by pressing any charges. One can assume that the night baker won't either but will be well compensated for her troubles.
So the stage is set.
If you're a Seattle Seahawk, you get whatever you want, and the coaching staff, media, and fans will just joke about it.
Let's see who gets the last laugh.