It starts with remorse.
The unequivocal, heartfelt, convincing kind.
Remorse for NFL side judge Laird Hayes who grabbed his left chest area in pain Sunday after a 336-pound Raiders lineman unintentionally mowed him to the ground. Remorse for the minimum three punches personally thrown. Remorse for the nearly five-minute delay in game action, for the optics to the league, for the damage to his team. Remorse, most of all, for young fans watching.
True remorse must be the basis for this to work.
Raiders wide receiver Michael Crabtree has an appeal hearing Tuesday for a two-game suspension the league levied onto both him and Denver Broncos cornerback Aqib Talib. Their squabble, which came in the first quarter of the Raiders’ 21-14 win in Oakland, centered around Talib having yanked Crabtree’s chain during a game for the second time since Jan. 1.
It seems the goal is to reduce the suspension from two games to one, and according to the story that appears winnable. The hearing is scheduled for today so an announcement could come sooner than later. It could potentially allow him to play a key, Dec. 10 game against the Chiefs.