When Professional Athletes Turn into Criminals  

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Almost every American can point out that the National Football League, and football in general is the ideal sport for television. Although, in a 2014 published article in The New York Times, by Neil Irwin, he explains the humanity reality of NFL players- the switch from professional athletes to criminal felonies. In the article, “What the Numbers Show about NFL Players Arrests,” Irwin emphasizes how professional football athletes have repeatedly been on social media networks on the topic of criminal offenses off the field. Irwin clearly establishes his claims with a credible database for the arrests and logically reasoning; however, his credibility is questionable, and he lacks appealing to the audience’s emotions and not being factually sound weakens his credibility and argument overall. In the article, Irwin introduces his argument with the Ray Rice domestic assault as an example of the many NFL arrests that happen. Irwin continues by describing drunk driving and domestic violence are the most frequently reported form of arrests of these professional athletes.

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Furthermore, Irwin focuses on the highest arrests, the franchises with the most arrests, and the numbers concerning the arrests. Irwin also makes the conclusion that the teams with the highest number of arrest in earlier years, have the pattern of high arrests rates in the years to come. Possible causes of this, Irwin suggests, the possible network and communication between the top management of the franchise discussing their negotiable or non-negotiable illegal behaviors of the players and the geographic of the players. In the beginning of his article, Irwin uses a credible source to strengthen the argument and appeal to logos, as well as building his argument. The database is the USA Today, titled, NFL Player Arrests. The database is constructed from date, description, and the outcome the of offense by the player. Citing this source exhibits Irwin’s diligence of providing facts and solid examples to support his claim.

He later designed a graphic table demonstrating the most common arrests these players commit. Throughout the article, Irwin’s details and numbers build an appeal to logos and impress upon the reader that this is a problem worth discussing. Irwin lacks to build his credibility throughout the article to appeal to ethos. Neil Irwin is a economics journalist who writes analysis about politics, economics, and other areas of daily life. Yet, sports is not an area he specializes in particularly (About Niel, 2015). No where in the article did Irwin construct his credibility for writing this article. Additionally, Irwin argument is structurally sound, yet he fails to cite his sources. Concerning the cause of the arrest rate decreasing in 2014, Irwin explains in the article, “we don’t know whether more NFL players were being arrested in those years, or whether TMZ and other outlets were better positioned to found out about it.” (Irwin,2014) In this quote, Irwin credibility is weakened due to the fact of mentioning, TMZ as a valid resource for news broadcasting. Throughout the article, Irwin states facts, without substantiating and citing where he retrieved the information from. Without clear citation of the information that was provided in the article, it was difficult to trust what exactly he is trying to prove. This damages the strength and his credibility of the argument. Along with not successfully building his credibility, Irwin also avoids the creating emotion between the audience.

Instead, Irwin only uses the strategy of logos, yet does not cite his sources. Though Irwin begins the article by effectively stating facts and statistics of these players, Irwin weakens his argument by not citing his sources, and not appealing to the audience emotions. Readers can understand the issue of crime frequently being committed by NFL players. 

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When Professional Athletes Turn into Criminals  . (2022, Oct 04). Retrieved January 27, 2023 , from
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