It has been a month since Cardinals linebacker Daryl Washington was suspended for a year by the NFL for repeatedly violating its substance abuse policy. It has been a month since Washington showed that his personal priorities trumped those of his team’s. Yet as Arizona has moved on without him, trying desperately to find his replacement at inside linebacker, the feelings toward him have, for the most part, remained the same. The Monday after his suspension was announced on a Friday, an air of disappointment floated over organized team activities. But there was still some compassion for the man who put his own interests over those of the team. “We've got to be there for him and be supportive and not put him out there on an island by himself,” veteran linebacker Lorenzo Alexander said. “We got to be there, calling [him], ‘What’s going on? Let’s talk.’ Just try to build off him and make sure he gets through this better than when he started.” There’s more to Washington’s suspension than just a player who was removed from the field for 16 games. He’s a man who’s in need of direction, of guidance, of help. And while a locker room is a family and the Cardinals all look at each other as brothers, it’s tough to fathom them being as sympathetic with Washington privately as they are publicly. He went back on a promise not to let his fans -- and teammates -- down anymore. I can’t imagine anyone not being let down by a full-year ban. He single-handedly put a playoff berth in jeopardy.
Cards sort out feelings over Washington
ESPN | Jul 1