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Aaron Hernandez: Gotta Watch the Quiet Ones

Gronk will get you drunk. Hernandez will get you murdered.

Gronk will get you drunk. Hernandez will get you murdered.

New England Patriots‘ tight end Rob Gronkowski has been consistently in the headlines for behavior that violates the strict standard of conduct we know is set by coach Bill Belichick.

With the exception of quarterback Tom Brady, the rest of that team is like child in the 1950s—they are to be seen and not heard. Only speak when spoken to, and even then, only pre-approved talking points should be used to answer the question. Nothing more, preferably something less.

Which is why Gronk’s flagrant flaunting of his party boy lifestyle have received far more attention from the national media than if he played for literally any other team in the league. Do you think the New York Jets organization would have forced Gronkowski to issue a formal apology for having his picture taken with a porn star on his bye week? A porn star wearing his jersey, no less.

No. No they would not. I can’t speak for owner Woody Johnson, but I’m pretty sure coach Rex Ryan would have released a statement about what a pimp Gronk is and then issue him an official letter of commendation that comes with a trophy and a cash prize. Then he’d ask Mark Sanchez why he wasn’t more of a man.

Gronk’s (not so) “Sorry for partying” attitude has been irking the organization for quite awhile now, but suddenly it looks extremely small potatoes compared to the recent shenanigans of their other stud tight end, Aaron Hernandez. And by “shenanigans,” I mean murder.

Actually, I mean alleged murder. (Legal reasons)

Now that you mention it, he does look kind of mean.

Now that you mention it, he does look kind of mean.

Right now Robert Kraft would give anything to be dealing with the fallout from Gronkowski’s latest wrestling match than having to grapple with the seriousness of the allegations facing Hernandez, who is likely to be arrested pending further police investigation, right now.

Boston was treated to their own “O.J. Simpson Light” situation yesterday, as a local FOX affiliate helicopter tracked Hernandez’s every move, as he drove around in his white SUV. He was tracked via air as he drove to Gillette Stadium, stopped for gas, and then paid a visit to his attorney—who is probably going to be very busy for quite awhile.

Hernandez is really dealing with several different legal incidents at the moment. The lesser issues, if you can really call them lesser, involve two separate incidents outside Providence nightclubs in May and June in which a gun was involved. Although the details remains hazy—probably because there are higher priority investigations going on right now.

Then there was the recent lawsuit filed by a man who alleges Hernandez shot him in Florida. According to NFL.com who obtained a copy of the complaint, the incident began with a verbal altercation between Hernandez and the victim outside a Miami strip club in February 2013.

The lawsuit alleges that things escalated as the involved parties left the scene and while on the road  Hernandez discharged his unlicensed gun, hitting the victim in the eye. He was found early the next morning near a landscaping business with gunshot wounds to the hand and face.

Somehow all of this managed to garner less total media attention than the relatively harmless hijinks of Rob Gronkowski. Until now. A Sports Illustrated report described Hernandez’s arrest as “likely,” stemming from his potential involvement in the murder of Odin Lloyd, who was reportedly with the Patriots tight end at a Boston bar on the night of his murder.

Lloyd’s body turn up at an industrial park about a mile from Hernandez’s home and police say forensic evidence linked his car to the scene of the crime. His home has been searched everything that has been turned up is currently being analyzed.

But…uh…let’s just say things aren’t looking good for Aaron Hernandez. They actually haven’t been looking good for him for quite awhile, but somehow that was kept relatively under wraps until recently. His under-the-radar life of crime is a little reminiscent of former Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Marvin Harrison.

This man is someone you don't want to tangle with.

This man is someone you don’t want to tangle with.

Harrison maintained a relatively low profile during his career in the NFL, speaking mainly through his stats and fading away during the offseason. The only difference is that Hernandez is absolutely terrible at criminal activity and Harrison remains a free man to this day.

A February 2010 profile in GQ magazine blew the lid off Harrison’s private life. Which, for anyone who read it, probably made them think a little more deeply about what their favorite athletes are doing with their off-seasons.

Some are just regular people, vacationing with their families. While others are out on the town with unlicensed guns murdering people. Different strokes, I suppose?

Anyway, there are no real winners here. People are dead, shot in the eye, going to jail, and the Patriots are probably going to be down another tight end when the season starts. The charges Hernandez is potentially facing seem pretty serious, meaning he could end up in jail for quite some time.

Granted, it sure does make Rob Gronkowski look better by comparison. So I guess there’s at least one winner. The ‘Summer of Gronk’ continues…with a bit more of a somber tone.

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