Lawrence Taylor is enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. His status as one of the best defensive players in NFL history is indisputable.
However, Lawrence Taylor also pled guilty in 2011 to sexual misconduct and soliciting a prostitute, a plea deal that saw more severe charges dropped:
Taylor, who was not present at the hearing, pleaded guilty in January to two counts, sexual misconduct and soliciting a prostitute in the third degree. Last month he was sentenced to six years’ probation in his home state of Florida. As a Level 1 offender he will not have his picture in an online database, but Kelly said that given the notoriety of the case, in effect there was very little difference between Level 1 and Level 2 for Taylor.
Taylor was arrested last May in a Rockland County Holiday Inn after a 16-year-old girl and her pimp, Rasheed Davis, were taken into custody. The girl, referred to in the case as C.F., said she had been beaten and forced to go to Taylor’s hotel, where they had sex.
Taylor still does appear in an online database. (Picture included, too, regardless of what that initial ruling would have you believe.) His six-year probation would have run out earlier in 2017, which might explain why NBC was comfortable airing this Lawrence Taylor/Joe Theismann-starring Thanksgiving football promo tonight:
The whole thing is obviously a play on one of the more infamous football moments in history: Taylor breaking Theismann’s leg on Monday Night Football 32 years ago yesterday. And if Theismann can laugh about it now, that’s all that really matters.
But factoring in Taylor’s history of arrests predating the 2011 sexual misconduct plea deal, and the whole thing just feels weird, as if the executive who greenlit the spot had been in a coma for 32 years and didn’t bother checking Wikipedia before saying yes.
Al and Cris found it funny, though.