Vikings' Stud Pass Rusher, Everson Griffen, Didn't Make It To Their Game This Past Weekend Due To A Hospitalization For A Mental Health Issue
FOX9- The Minnesota Vikings have confirmed defensive end Everson Griffen was not at Sunday's game for personal reasons.
"We are aware of the situation involving Everson Griffen and certainly concerned by what we have heard," said Vikings General Manager Rick Spielman in a statement. "We are currently focused on Everson's well-being and providing the appropriate support for him and his family."
According to Fox 9 law enforcement sources, Minneapolis Police were called to the Hotel Ivy Saturday afternoon on a report of threats being made by a guest. When they arrived, hotel personnel said Everson Griffen was making vague threats about “shooting the place up.” No weapon was ever shown or implied. Griffen agreed to leave the hotel.
Griffen was later detained by police in Western Hennepin County. Records show he was never booked into the county jail. Law enforcement sources said Griffen was taken to a local hospital in protective custody for an evaluation.
Griffen was already going to sit out Sunday's game against the Buffalo Bills due to an injury, but later missed attending the game on the sideline.
The good news, and I mean "good" in the most relative sense possible, is that given what we know now, we don't have to immediately assume that Eversen Griffen is some homicidal maniac with a thirst for armed violence. I suppose that he very well may be, but - as there have been no reports of such inexplicably erratic behavior in the past of a 30 year old player with a family - the bad news is that the episode that led to his hospitalization may be the result of the three letter acronym that typically waits until later in life to show it's unforgiving face.
Of course, I wasn't standing next to Everson Griffen when he received the diagnosis of his mental health evaluation, but we've gotten to a point where you have to instinctually worry/wonder about the health of every brain belonging to a professional football player who is randomly involved in news that leaves you scratching your head while muttering "wtf". Like, if we are basing our opinion of this story on recent history then the best case scenario is probably that one of the league's preeminent pass rushers got his hands on a tainted batch of synthetic weed, but I don't know that one bad trip would lead to a prolonged absence from the team.
Speaking both prematurely and speculatively, this sounds like it could possibly be the beginning of the end for Everson Griffen as a player, if only because it's the right decision for him as a person. The hope is that his worst fear isn't realized, but the depression and/or addiction associated with degenerative brain diseases has so often become the problem that it's tough not to consider him slowly saying goodbye to a game that demands an outrageous amount of physical and mental sacrifice to be one obvious solution. Again, it's impossible to know what actually happened or what the motivation for it was, but it requiring an active, dominant player to get a psychological evaluation is as scary a sign as it has ever been for those involved in the professional pounding that is NFL football.