The NFL Draft is under two weeks away and it appears many people have bought into the the idea of the Buccaneers drafting Florida State’s Jameis Winston. But the excitement and expectations of drafting Winston has been tamed with some concern.
The expected lawsuit that was filed Thursday by Winston’ accuser Erica Kinsman immediately raised concerns that it will factor into Tampa Bay’s decision, but it will not. Even with news that the team was already aware of this happening, some bring up concerns in regards to the suit and the impact it will have on both the team and on Winston.
If this drags on, which looks like there is a chance it does, then it can take away time from football. However, the documents themselves are another attempt by Kinsman that could fail. And here is why.
There are inconsistencies in the latest suit, much like the inconsistencies in previous filings. First, they attempt to re-introduce former Florida State teammate Ronald Darby.
Unfortunately, this claim is inaccurate in itself. Darby’s post that the suit references above was not posted the next day as paragraph 32 claims. The post was created two days later on December 9, 2012 by a teammate and not Darby himself according to the post’s thread on Facebook.
To further add to the fallacy of the claim, Darby has testified already saying that the encounter was consensual, adding that she was more than willing.
The next thing worth questioning is their claims of locating the taxi driver from that evening.
This one is rather interesting for a couple reasons. For starters, records show the that all drivers from that evening was interviewed and none made reference to Kinsman’s impairment.
The second part about that claim is the usage of the word “appeared.” Legal folks contacted by TBC state that this claim will be hard for the prosecution to prove if it goes to trial. And if in fact there is a rogue driver they found and he is asked to take the stand, his testimony may be ruled out. The toxicology report may also play a hand in throwing this claim out.
It’s worth noting that Kinsman’s team has maintained they she was unaware who Winston was before he was the starting quarterback for the Seminoles in 2013. But well into the 2013 season, after her sexual assault claim was filed, she supported Winston even saying “Our QB > Your QB” to other school’s fans.
Her social media posts — since deleted — can be found here.
Many have said Kinsman is suffering from emotional challenges since the alleged assault. As the suit references that, it also claims the alleged assault has caused “past and future harm to Plaintiff’s education” as well as “past and future physical injury” yet on her LinkedIn profile it shows she is enrolled at the University of South Florida as well as taking up an internship at a local business.
The emotional challenges, however they come about, is what some alleged victims suffer if it’s not legitimately assault. One has to wonder if that’s what Kinsman is really going through especially after she wrote this in a piece about domestic violence on her personal blog, theekseries.wordpress.com.
Over the weekend, things got more interesting when a report on Outside the Lines on ESPN claimed the Buccaneers never met with state attorney Williams Meggs, making it seem as if they half-assed their background investigations on Jameis Winston.
That was partly true, however, Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times confirmed the Bucs did reach out to the state attorney’s office but instead spoke with Meggs’ assistant Georgia Cappleman — who was the lead investigator in the sexual assault case.
The Buccaneers — from the staff to the owners — are on record saying they are comfortable with what their research has uncovered about Winston. And speaking of being comfortable, Albert Breer of NFL Network tweeted the following out Monday morning.
As I said on @NFL_AM, the Bucs have come to a comfort level with who they'll take 1st overall. Next 10 days = about making sure it's right.
— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) April 20, 2015
If you look closely, the concerns aren’t that of the Buccaneers as they have been on record saying certain things. The concern is created by how the situation is portrayed through reports and how it is interpreted. And if the courts view this suit in Winston’s favor, then there is no concern for missing any football time.