By Tom E. Curran
Aweek ago I wondered on the Twitter how many knuckleheads would give their NFL brethren a black eye by getting into trouble during the lockout. Mike Vrabel was not a guy I had in mind. But apparently the former Patriot got arrested in Indiana earrrrrllly Monday morning for theft at the Belterra Casino in Florence, Indiana. Mike Florio at Pro Football Talk broke the story. Vrabel got booked at 5:28 a.m. My guess is he wasn't up early, but out late. As Florio reports, theft of anything in Indiana is a Class D felony so that's what Vrabel is on the hook for. Florio reports that Vrabel was released at 10:39 a.m. after posting a 600 bond.
In other words, he could have stolen a casino chip. Or a sweet top hat. Or maybe he was just helping someone out with their poker. Six hundred bucks bond doesn't generally indicate the infraction was too dire. Vrabel replied to an email I sent him with the following message: It was an unfortunate misunderstanding, and I take full responsibility for the miscommunication. I feel comfortable that after talking with the appropriate parties, we will resolve this matter.But Vrabel getting arrested for anything right now is worse than just about any other player in the league getting arrested for grand theft auto. At least for appearances. He's on the NFLPA's executive committee and was a vocal leader of that group. His suggestion two weeks ago that the NFLPA committee meet with a handful of owners while the lawyers cleared the room got a lot of play. Vrabel is a smart, no-BS guy who would have represented the players' interests well. We'll see how much this mitigates his ability to take a leading role at the table.