It seems likely Josh Brown has kicked for the last time in 2016, perhaps ever as a member of the Giants and maybe even in the NFL. Brown has been removed from the 53-man roster and placed on the commissioner’s exempt list, likely ending his season and putting his career in jeopardy, according to Chris Mortensen for ESPN.
The move was expected after Brown’s confessions to domestic violence came to light this week. The Giants also signed Robbie Gould, signaling they were ready to move on at kicker. Brown could remain on the exempt list for as long as NFL commissioner Roger Goodell allows. The team has the option to continue paying a player on the list, although it’s unclear whether that is the case here.
Basically, the exempt list is a way for clubs to get around the maximum team-imposed four-game suspension or just deactivating him every week due to off-field incidents. The most notable past uses include Adrian Peterson for the Vikings and Greg Hardy with the Panthers.
The Giants also could’ve released Brown, but the organization has taken the position of trying to support one of its own. That doesn’t mean his actions are condoned, but rather than outright cut ties, they can continue to be involved while Brown gets whatever help he needs and attempts to turn his life around.
It’s a noble cause, but one that will no doubt draw criticism. Many people want to see the NFL move to a zero tolerance policy for crimes such as domestic violence, and the Giants keeping Brown in any form, even if he’s not in uniform on Sundays, might send the opposite message.
Either way, it doesn’t appear Brown will be playing for the Giants anytime soon, and this scandal likely makes him untouchable around the league, likely bringing the 37-year-old’s career to an end.