CINCINNATI -- In a discussion about Colin Kaepernick's apparent "blackballed" status in the NFL, Bob Costas criticized NFL teams who hire players with criminal history -- namely, the Bengals.
"Domestic abusers, people guilty of various forms of misbehavior, find their way on NFL rosters," Costas said on CNN Sunday. "(Adam) Pacman Jones was just suspended again, for a single game for a run-in with police several months ago. He’s got a rap sheet a mile long, and collects millions of dollars for the Cincinnati Bengals, who at various times seem to be running a halfway house for miscreants."
Costas made the comparison to illustrate what he considers hypocrisy in hiring among NFL teams. Owners won't hire Kaepernick -- presumably because of political protest and statements he made in the past year, Costas said, because his game statistics aren't bad -- but they will hire someone like Jones, who has annual appearances in criminal court.
"You've got to believe that Colin Kaepernick -- regardless of whether you agree or disagree with him politically -- deserves a chance to apply his trade," Costas said.
Costas did explain some legitimate reasons for teams to avoid hiring Kaepernick, specifically that he thrives in a pistol offense.
"But 32 teams? With backups? Come on," Costas said.
Jones was suspended for the Bengals' season opener following the release of a video from January in which he repeatedly cursed at a police officer -- telling them "I hope you die" -- and resisting jailers at the Hamilton County Justice Center.
Jones received the one-game suspension for violating the league's Personal Conduct Policy. Jones will be docked one game's pay - $425,000 - from his $6.8 million salary in 2017. That would raise Jones' total of NFL fines and lost wages to almost $2.2 million over his career, according to spotrac. He had four previous fines for more than $1.7 million, according to the website.
In a letter to Jones, the NFL said it considered "the extensive video documentation of the tone, tenor and nature of your interactions with law enforcement at the site of your arrest, during transportation to the jail and during the booking process," according to James Palmer of NFL Network. "Your post-arrest words and actions reflected poorly on you and your family, the Cincinnati Bengals football club and the NFL."
WCPO reached out to the Bengals for comment.