The NFL will look like hypocrites if they punish Patriots cornerback Jack Jones

Detroit Lions v New England Patriots
Detroit Lions v New England Patriots / Nick Grace/GettyImages

The Patriots were the last team that needed any further drama this offseason, so the news of Jack Jones' arrest last week was utterly disappointing.

What made the situation even worse was how good Jones had looked through minicamp, even being considered one of the standout performers this spring.

After a shaky end to his rookie season by being suspended by Bill Belichick for the year's final game, it was promising to see things smoothed over and Jones back on track, showing the glimpses of star power we saw from him last year.

There was a lot of speculation regarding how the organization would deal with the news, as they are a team known for acting swiftly when a player is caught in the middle of something unfortunate.

But all the team has done to date is release a statement shortly after Jones' arrest, simply acknowledging their awareness of the situation. That's it.

The debate about what the team should do with the young player picked up again after Jones was arraigned in Boston earlier this week. Then, we got a potential glimpse into their early thought process courtesy of Jones' attorney, Rosemary Scapicchio.

While speaking to the media upon leaving the courthouse, Scapicchio revealed that the incident "almost got him fired," which was the first insight into what Belichick and Co. were contemplating since the news broke.

The good news, for now, is that it appears Jones' spot on the team is safe. That can change at any moment, but the fact they didn't cut him immediately may be a positive sign for the young cornerback.

Then came an incredibly informative and intriguing piece by WBZ CBS Boston's Michael Hurley, which reviewed the number of similar incidents that occur annually at airports to demonstrate how common the mistake Jones made happens throughout the United States every day, despite how ridiculous it may seem.

He went over some of the more intricate details of Jones' case as well, even discussing the punishment he could be facing if found guilty of what he's been charged with.

And even though that information was eye-opening on one level, the other part of Hurley's piece was just as revealing when wondering how the NFL may come down on Jones regarding potential punishment.

Hurley reviewed the number of times the NFL had dealt with any gun offense over the years and detailed what happened when Kansas City Chiefs defensive tackle Frank Clark was put into the spotlight for his questionable situation. He included how Roger Goodell punished him for the incidents, which was a surprising revelation.

"The three-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle was pulled over on two separate occasions in 2021. Both times, a police officer found weapons in the car that turned out to be unregistered. Just three months later, he was pulled over again, and another gun was found in his vehicle.

For these offenses, the NFL suspended Clark for ... two games."

Considering the Patriots' punishments over the years, it's interesting to see a player be in this type of situation and only given a two-game suspension.

But that wasn't the only interesting part of it all.

Clark wasn't suspended for those two incidents until six weeks after he pleaded no contest to the charges. That allowed him to play seven games for the Chiefs that season before serving the suspension. Upon his return, he played in the season's final games and became part of Kansas City's Super Bowl-winning team.

Clark's entire situation puts Jones' potential punishment up in the air.

The situations are different, as Clark was charged with illegal gun possession and not bringing loaded firearms to the airport. However, Goodell still felt that only suspending the defensive player for two games was sufficient enough.

Most have assumed the commissioner will hand down a length suspension, given the Patriots' patchy history of "breaking the rules" over the years. But wouldn't that be hypocritical, seeing how they handled Clark's incidents?

If Clark could be pulled over twice in three months, charged with the same offense both times, and only receive a two-game suspension, should Jones receive anything equal or more than that?

The answer is no.

The problem, of course, is how much Goodell enjoys unreasonable suspensions and fines when a situation involves the Patriots. Without going over every time Goodell probably went overboard with the punishments he gave them, it wouldn't be surprising if Jones is on the receiving end of a worse suspension than that of Clark.

Hopefully, that's not the case, especially since the Patriots have yet to hand down any repercussions for his arrest, and Jones isn't due to be back in court until mid-August. But the NFL isn't known for being a reasonable organization.

Regardless of what happens, it's an all-around unfortunate situation. Jones' draft stock fell despite his talent because of his "off-the-field issues" stemming from a misdemeanor charge in 2018 for breaking into a Panda Express after the restraunt was closed.

The Patriots took a chance on him because of the talent and potential he had and displayed on the field, and this latest incident feeds the negativity that has surrounded him since his college career.

One good thing, however, is it appears at least some of his fellow Patriots are in his corner, as Matthew Judon responded to a tweet about the arrest, sharing he hopes this situation can help better Jones and his future.

Having some internal support may play a big part in how the Patriots handle the situation as they receive more details. But as for now, it's a positive that Jones is still part of the team, and hopefully, we won't need to later discuss the hypocrisy of the NFL for how they decided to address it all.